Rugby 8.6.2018 03:44 pm

Captain Siya won’t suddenly become a control freak

Siya Kolisi during the South African national mens rugby team captains media briefing and team photograph at Tsogo Sun Montecasino on June 08, 2018 in Johannesburg, South Africa. (Photo by Lee Warren/Gallo Images)

Siya Kolisi during the South African national mens rugby team captains media briefing and team photograph at Tsogo Sun Montecasino on June 08, 2018 in Johannesburg, South Africa. (Photo by Lee Warren/Gallo Images)

The new Springbok captain wants to use the other leaders around him and also describes Ellis Park as a ‘special place’.

Siya Kolisi might have to lead just that little bit more from the front as Springbok captain but he’s not suddenly going to become a control freak.

In fact, staying true to himself is something the 26-year-old flanker and coach Rassie Erasmus has focused on in the build-up to Saturday’s first Test against England at Ellis Park.

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“To be honest, things haven’t been different this week,” Kolisi said on Friday.

“Rassie helped me to ensure that I’m still me and that I’m doing the things that I’m comfortable with.

“The only thing that will be different is me talking to the ref. Other than that, I’m still going to make sure that I do my work on the field, making sure I do what I always do and work on it harder.”

Flanked by other leaders such as No 8 Duane Vermeulen, flyhalf Handre Pollard and prop Beast Mtawarira, Kolisi certainly won’t have to feel he’s man-alone in terms of leadership.

“There are other guys that are going to help me. I’m not going to take care of everything myself.”

His first assignment as skipper is also made easier by the fact that the Boks are playing at one of their favourite grounds.

“When I play for my franchise, my favourite ground is Newlands. But when I play for my country, my favourite ground is Ellis Park,” the Bok captain said on Friday.

“It’s a special atmosphere. In the past, I’ve looked up into the crowd and have seen people of every race and colour. It’s one of those stadiums where the national anthem is sung equally at the same volume from start to finish.

“The Boks always turn up at Ellis Park. It’s where we play our best rugby.”

 

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