Hi Les, I don't use Kolinsky Sable for my watercolours, and have never used them. However, if you bought them through SAA, you should phone and discuss the problem.
Generally, after use with sables, if you dip the bristles in clean water (it can be warm, but not hot) and lift them out straight, and the bristles should cling together to a smooth point.
If you used the brushes, as I'm sure you would with brushes of this quality, in a careful manner, then I'm as surprised as you, and would also be disappointed.
Have a word with the shop, and lets know how you get on.
RSC Wigan / Warrington / St Helens