RUGBY'S young "Greek god”, Demetri Catrakilis is heading to Port Elizabeth to play for the Southern Kings despite a desperate last- minute bid by Western Province to retain his services.
Despite helping Western Province to a dramatic Currie Cup final win over the Sharks in Durban at the weekend, Catrakilis, 23, said his future was now in Port Elizabeth with the new Super Rugby franchise.
"I'm excited. I made the decision I wanted to go to the Kings a while ago and I've now stuck to it. It's a new challenge and I'm excited to prove myself in Super Rugby,” Catrakilis told EWNSport.
He said seeing the effect the Currie Cup victory had on Cape Town was surreal but it had not changed his decision.
The star pivot said he was looking forward to working with Kings director of rugby Alan Solomons.
Even though the man they call the "Greek god” in Cape Town was flagged as the first of the new Kings signings, there were always a nagging doubt as to whether the move would materialise.
That doubt was finally removed yesterday when Catrakilis turned down a late plea from Western Province coach Allister Coetzee to stay in Cape Town.
EP Rugby president Cheeky Watson, speaking at the team's awards evening on Saturday, predicted Catrakilis would be a key man for the Kings.
"Our new signing, Catrakilis, was the tipping scale that allowed Western Province to beat the Sharks in the Currie Cup final, and he will be our pivotal flyhalf next year.”
Catrakilis kept his word to join the Kings, alongside Sharks lock Steven Sykes and Cheetahs midfielder Andries Strauss.
The Kings also completed the signing of former Pumas scrumhalf Shaun Venter and former Springbok hooker Bandise Maku.
On Monday, Maku announced his move to the Kings on Twitter, saying: "Only nw cn w officially say tht I'm going 2 th Kings.Thnk u all 4 ur devoted support thru out ths season. Looking 4wrd 2 a fruitful yr ahead.”