Tom Fordyce “Siya Kolisi and South Africa's triumph 'a story to inspire far beyond the rugby pitch'” https://www.bbc.com/sport/rugby-union/50275155
There have been totemic South African captains before and there have been two who have also won the World Cup. But as Siya Kolisi, the first black skipper in the country's history, lifted the Webb Ellis trophy into the clear evening sky, golden ticker-tape streaming down behind him, if felt like something changing forever.
When Nelson Mandela celebrated with Francois Pienaar at Ellis Park in Johannesburg in 1995 there was one black player in the Springbok team. When John Smit did the same, arm in arm with Thabo Mbeki in Paris in 2007, there were two.
This was a moment and an image that more truly represents the balance and nuances of the complicated nation behind it than even those iconic triumphs in its wake. In the team's leader is a story to inspire far beyond a rugby pitch and podium.
A kid from the townships who was born with nothing, whose parents were too young and too poor to raise him and so entrusted him to his grandmother. A rugby obsessive who played without kit, whose mother died when he was 15 and whose grandmother died in his arms a few months later.
*1:See also https://sumita-m.hatenadiary.com/entry/20150716/1437069891 https://sumita-m.hatenadiary.com/entry/20150719/1437325616 https://sumita-m.hatenadiary.com/entry/2019/09/29/080334 https://sumita-m.hatenadiary.com/entry/2019/10/11/012655 https://sumita-m.hatenadiary.com/entry/2019/10/20/112335