After only a week together as a new team, EP Kings coach Barend Pieterse was surprised at how well his players fared in certain aspects of their Currie Cup loss to the Boland-Cavaliers last Friday.
Despite losing their opening Currie Cup fixture 28-10, Pieterse told Netwerk24 there were positives to take out of the match.
"Our set pieces were good and the players managed to get to grip with a few new systems in a very short amount of time," Pieterse said.
However, their efforts were undermined by two yellow cards, to lock Tazz Fuzani and winger Alcino Izaacs respectively.
Brent Janse van Rensburg, Boland coach, said he wasn't surprised by the competitiveness the Kings showed.
"I wasn't surprised at all. They managed to recruit some very good players in record time. If you have players who can do the basics right and are fearless, then you can expect a good contest.
Meanwhile Golden Lions coach Johan Ackerman admitted he was chuffed after his team's dominant 68-26 victory over the Pumas, despite playing in the Super Rugby final the week before.
"It was exactly what we needed," Ackerman said. This performance will give expecially the young players in our team a lot of confidence. The idea wasn't to send out a message to the other teams in our first game. I'm not reading too much into the score.
"All I wanted was to continue playing the kind of rugby we want to play and that is exactly what happened. I was worried prior to the game about the unity among the players who haven't played together before but things turned out quite nicely."