Siya Kolisi

Siyamthanda Kolisi (born 16 June 1991) is a South African rugby union player who currently captains the South Africa national team and also plays club rugby for the Stormers in Super Rugby and Western Province in the Currie Cup. He generally plays as a flanker. When in 2019, Kolisi was appointed captain of the Springboks, he became the first black man to hold the position. Kolisi led the South African Rugby team to victory in the 2019 World Cup final against England in Yokohama, Japan.

Kolisi made his senior debut for Western Province against the Golden Lions during the 2011 Vodacom Cup and later in the year several injuries and international call-ups gave him the opportunity to make regular starts in the Currie Cup. He made 13 appearances and scored 4 tries during the campaign including a crucial score against bitter rivals the Blue Bulls.

2012 saw Kolisi graduate to the Stormers squad and he made an immediate impact with 16 appearances during the season and 1 try. The second half of the year was not so kind to him as a thumb injury restricted him to just one appearance in the 2012 Currie Cup and he had to watch on from the sidelines as Province lifted their 33rd Currie Cup title.

Kolisi returned with a bang the following year and held his place in the Stormers side despite fierce competition among the loose forwards. 13 appearances and 2 tries were recorded and this earned him his first international recognition. Being part of the Springbok set-up for the 2013 Rugby Championship meant he only played in Western Province’s final 3 matches of the 2013 Currie Cup and he was powerless to prevent them from slipping to a surprise 33–19 home defeat to the Sharks in the final of the competition.

Kolisi was selected as the new captain of the Stormers on 20 February 2017. He was selected as the new captain of the Springboks on 28 May 2018, becoming the team’s first black captain in its 126-year history. Bryan Habana, former Springbok and of mixed race, praised Kolisi’s appointment: “It’s a monumental moment for South African rugby and a moment in South African history.”

Kolisi is on the board of directors of MyPlayers which is the players’ organisation of all the professional rugby players in South Africa.