Earlier anticipation was building in the community of Zwide in Port Elizabeth where new Springbok captain Siya Kolisi was born.
Hundreds of rugby fans were at taverns across Zwide gathered to support their local hero as he lead his country for the very first time.
Kolisi celebrated becoming South Africa’s first black Test captain by leading his country to a thrilling 42-39 triumph over England on Saturday in the first Test in Johannesburg.
Trailing by 21 points after 18 minutes, the Springboks staged a magnificent rally to lead 29-27 at half-time and held off a late England rally to succeed in a 10-try international.
Twenty six years ago Zwide was home to Kolisi. It was where he developed his love for rugby.
He shot into the spotlight at Emsengeni Primary School. He was then offered of a full scholarship at Grey High were he honed his rugby skills.
His track record speaks for itself, with 22 test matches in the green and gold with four tries to his name and 100 appearances in Super Rugby and as the Stormers’ Captain.
Themba Ledwaba a rugby legend says: “This should have been done long ago. It’s long overdue as negotiations started in 1992, it’s 2018 now but we welcome it and we are proud of Siya, and we hope he will be supported.”
Five players from the Eastern Cape made the Springboks’ squad. – Additional reporting AFP