Rugby 31.5.2018 09:55 am

‘Forgotten’ skipper Pieter-Steph happy to fly under the radar

Pieter-Steph du Toit of the Springboks during the Springboks team announcement media conference at Livorno Room, Tsogo Sun Montecasino on May 30, 2018 in Johannesburg, South Africa. (Photo by Sydney Seshibedi/Gallo Images)

Pieter-Steph du Toit of the Springboks during the Springboks team announcement media conference at Livorno Room, Tsogo Sun Montecasino on May 30, 2018 in Johannesburg, South Africa. (Photo by Sydney Seshibedi/Gallo Images)

As everyone celebrates Siya Kolisi’s appointment, one tends to forget there’s a different Springbok captain for the weekend’s Test against Wales.

As most of the South African rugby fraternity gets swept up by the euphoria of Siya Kolisi’s appointment as Springbok captain, it’s easy to forget there’s a different leader in charge against Wales in Washington on Saturday.

Pieter-Steph du Toit though wouldn’t have it any other way.

“Siya was the obvious choice for the captaincy,” said the towering lock, who’s become one of the Boks key players.

“I really backed him for that role. As a Stormers teammate, I know he’s a great leader for the franchise. He’s a champion person off the field too. It’s a great privilege to be handed the captaincy with a guy like him.”

The 25-year-old from Riebeek-Kasteel was a somewhat surprising choice for the captain’s armband though his leadership qualities have always been pointed out by his coaches.

It’s perhaps just a case of various teammates standing ahead of him in the queue that’s prevented him for leading a side at provincial level.

Leadership is clearly something Du Toit has thought about previously and he’s not afraid to share what qualities he believes constitute a good captain.

“It’s someone that can put his money where his mouth is,” he said.

“It’s quite simple. A captain needs to perform week-in and week-out. He needs to set the standard on the training field and can never be late for team meetings. It’s really just about being professional.”

Does he see any of those qualities within himself?

“I definitely go out every weekend to give my best. I do think I’m the type of leader that sets by example,” said Du Toit.

“I’m going to try and inspire my teammates do give their best too. I like to motivate.”

 

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