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An insight into the Springboks


Eben Etzebeth


Player information

Eben Etzebeth made his Springbok debut in 2012 against England in Durban. The 24-year-old matriculated from Hoërskool Tygerberg in 2009. Two years later he made his first appearance for FNB UCT at the FNB Varsity Cup, presented by Steinhoff International. He however, sustained an injury in his debut season, sidelining him for the duration of the 2011 season. Etzebeth soon regained his fitness and made his Super Rugby debut at the beginning of 2012 against the Hurricanes. His impeccable form for the Stormers was rewarded when former Bok coach Heyneke Meyer handed him his first International Test Cap. Uniquely Etzebeth, who was one of World Rugby's (formerly known as the IRB) Player of the Year nominees in 2012, made his Springbok debut before his Western Province Currie Cup debut. He is the youngest Springbok player ever to reach 50 Test Caps for South Africa.


University

UCT


School

Hoërskool Tygerberg

 

Ryen Etzebeth

Eben Etzebeth's brother

Ryen and Eben have been best friends forever. Ryen is considered a mentor and a rock in Eben's life and often goes to the field with him, to time him during fitness training. When they were still young boys, Ryen actually saved Eben's life while the pair were swimming in the sea. As brothers and best friends, it's evident that they would do anything for one another.

 

Lood de Jager


Player information

Lodewyk de Jager (better known as Lood de Jager) joined Super Rugby side, the Bulls, at the end of the 2016 season. De Jager attended Springs-based high school, Hoërskool Hugenote. He played for the Leopards until the end of 2012, moved to the Cheetahs in 2013 and was a standout performer for the Bloemfontein outfit until the end of 2016. The second rower represented the FNB NWU-Pukke in the 2012 edition of the FNB Varsity Cup presented by Steinhoff International. The 24-year-old has made 29 appearances for the Springboks since his debut against Wales in Durban on 14 June 2014.


University

Pukke


School

Hoërskool Hugenote, Springs

 

Handré Pollard


Player information

Handré Pollard was born in Somerset West and matriculated from Paarl Gimnasium in 2012. He joined Pretoria side, the Bulls at the beginning of 2013 and played for the South Africa U20 side for three years between 2012 and 2014. Pollard helped the FNB UP-Tuks retain their FNB Varsity Cup presented by Steinhoff International title, in 2013, after winning it for the first time in 2012. The 23-year-old won IRB Player of the Tournament at the end of the 2014 Junior World Championships and made his Bok debut against Argentina in the same year. The former FNB UP-Tuks fly-half scored two tries during South Africa's victory over New Zealand in Johannesburg on 4 October 2014. This win ended a 22-match winning streak for the All Blacks in the Rugby Championships.


University

Tuks


School

Paarl Gimnasium

 

Oupa Mohojé


Player information

Teboho Mohojé better known as Oupa Mohojé made his Springbok debut in 2014 against Australia in Cape Town. The loose forward, who was born in QwaQwa, attended Louis Botha HTS in Bloemfontein and represented Free State at the U/18 Academy and Craven Week. Mohojé played for the Free State U/21 side between 2010 and 2011 and made his first class debut, while he was on loan to the Griffons, against the Border Bulldogs in the 2012 Currie Cup first division season. During his time at Free State, the 26-year-old played for FNB Shimlas in the FNB Varsity Cup, presented by Steinhoff International for three seasons during 2011 to 2013. He was voted as the FNB Player That Rocks at the end of the 2013 tournament.


University

Shimlas


School

Louis Botha HTS, Bloemfontein

Peter Mohoje

Oupa Mohoje's father

Peter noticed Oupa's talent for rugby in high school while Oupa was playing in a tournament. Little did he realise that this potential woud see his son advance on to play for the Springboks. As a very proud father, Peter has the jersey from his son's first capping ceremony framed at home.

   

Oom Jan Siebert

Oupa' Mohoje's mentor

As Oupa Mohojé's high school coach, Jan says he has never seen a person work so hard to achieve his goals, whether in the gym or on the rugby field. He can still remember the days when Oupa was playing trials for Craven Week and says he is exceptionally proud that Oupa has reached his dream of becoming a Springbok.

 

Bongi Mbonambi


Player information

Mbongeni (Bongi) Theo Mbonambi joined Super Rugby side, the Stormers at the beginning of the 2015 season. The hooker, who previously played for the Bulls, has made over 30 appearances for the Cape Town-based side since then. Mbonambi played for FNB TUT and FNB UP-Tuks in the 2011 and 2013 season, respectively. The St. Alban's College graduate made his Bok debut in 2016 against Ireland in Port Elizabeth.


University

TUT & Tuks


School

St. Alban's College

 

Sheila Nombulelo Mbonambi & Mpinda Mbonambi

Bongi's mother & father

Sheila and Mpinda Mbonambi, Bongi Mbonambi's parents, were pivotal in the early stages of his rugby career and remain at the forefront of his support system. They made a lot of sacrifices to ensure that he could continue playing rugby and as Bongi's biggest supporters, they serve as constant motivators to him.

 

Siya Kolisi


Player information

Kolisi grew up in the Zwide township outside Port Elizabeth and endured a tough upbringing. At the age of 12 he impressed scouts at a youth tournament in Mossel Bay and was offered a scholarship at Grey Junior in Port Elizabeth. He subsequently moved up to Grey High School, where he was a member of the first XV rugby team. He formed part of the Kings youth set up between 2007 and 2009 and played in the U16 Grant Khomo week and the U18 Craven Week, before shifting west to join Western Province.


University

N/A


School

Grey High

 

Eric Songwigi

Siya's Kolisi's school coach

Siya's first encounter with coach Eric was when his team played against the school Eric taught at. After the game, Eric approached Siya and told him that he had the potential to play rugby and that's where his belief that he could do anything was born.

 

Andrew Hayidakis

Siya Kholisi's high school coach

Mr H as he is known to Siya, saw Siya's talent from a young age. He took him under his wing, offered him an education, and taught him rugby. He was Siya's headmaster and rugby coach and has remained his mentor and friend. "He taught me everything I know about rugby and instilled discipline and pride in me," says Siya.

 

Tendai Mtawarira


Player information

Tendai 'Beast' Mtawarira (born 1 August 1985) is a Zimbabwean-born South African Rugby Union player for the South African national team and the Sharks in Super Rugby and in the Currie Cup. He attended Churchill School in Harare before moving to Peterhouse Boys' School in Marondera, both in Zimbabwe, along with Brian Mujati, who also represented the Springboks. Notably, despite living in South Africa and representing the country internationally, Mtawarira was a Zimbabwean national until late June 2010. He qualified for South African residency after living here for three years, as allowed under International Rugby Board rules. Mtawarira, a prop, carries the nickname 'The Beast'. He made his debut as a South African Rugby Union player against Wales in a test match on 14 June 2008. The following week, on 21 June 2008, Mtawarira scored a try against Italy and was named 'Man of the Match'. He is the most capped prop in South African history.


University

N/A


School

Peterhouse Boys School, Harare

Kuziva Mtawarira

Tendai Mtawarira's wife

Ku, as she is affectionately known, left her life in Zimbabwe, to move to Durban to build a solid grounding for her family. Kuziva and Tendai have two beautiful children, aged 7 and 5.

 

Jesse Kriel


Player information

As a scholar at Maritzburg College, Kriel was selected for the Sharks squad U/18 Craven Week tournament, where his performance earned him an inclusion in the South African Schools side in 2012. After finishing school, Kriel - along with twin brother Dan - made the move to Pretoria to join the Blue Bulls prior to the 2013 season. Despite not initially being chosen for the South African U20 squad for the 2013 IRB Junior World Championship, a hamstring injury suffered by Sergeal Petersen led to Kriel's inclusion into the squad. Kriel appeared as a substitute in their first match of the competition and scored two tries in a comprehensive 97-0 victory over the United States. Further substitute appearances followed against England and France in 2012. He was an unused substitute in their semi-final match against Wales, before making his first start of the competition in the third-placed play-off match against New Zealand. For the remainder of 2013, Kriel played more youth rugby for the Blue Bulls, scoring 42 points in ten matches to help the Blue Bulls U19 win the 2013 U/19 Provincial Championship competition, also making three appearances for the Blue Bulls U21 side. He was included in the South African U20 side for the 2014 IRB Junior World Championship, where he was named one of two vice-captains for the tournament.


University

N/A


School

Maritzburg College

André Truter

Jesse Kriel's first coach

André Truter introduced Jesse to rugby and was his team's coach at Underberg Primary School. He sponsored the jerseys for the team out of his own pocket, drove the team to games in a minibus and helped the ones who could not afford rugby gear. He still sees Jesse and is so proud of the Springbok he has become.

 

Steven Kitshoff


Player information

Kitshoff first broke through during the 2011 season, making five substitute appearances for the Stormers and then five Currie Cup appearances for Western Province while still only a teenager. He became more of a regular during 2012, nailing down the number 1 jersey for both the Stormers and Western Province, also winning the Currie Cup title with Province in an impressive win over the Sharks in Durban. His 2013 Super Rugby campaign was solid, and he carried that form into the Currie Cup later in the year where he was ever-present as Province reached a second consecutive Currie Cup final, this time going down at home to the Sharks. Unfortunately, 2014 was a year of frustration as he succumbed to a season-ending injury towards the back-end of the Super Rugby season and this ruled him out of Western Province's successful Currie Cup campaign, in which they lifted the title for the second time in three years, with a narrow win over the Golden Lions at Newlands. In February 2015, it was revealed that Kitshoff would join French Top 14 side Bordeaux at the conclusion of the 2015 Currie Cup Premier Division season. On 28 May 2016, Kitshoff was included in a 31-man South Africa squad for their three-test match series against a touring Ireland team and 2018 saw him rejoining the Stormers.


University

N/A


School

Paul Roos

 

Guiding the team with SARU


Nico Serfontein


SARU Springboks Talent Scout

 

Karin van Loggerenberg


SARU Travel Manager

 

Herman Masimla


SARU Talent Scout

 

Aled Walters


SARU Strength, Conditioning and Nutrition Coach

 

Annlie Murray


SARU Springboks PR & Commercial Manager

 

Jacques Nienaber


SARU Springboks Defence Coach

 

JJ Fredericks


SARU Springboks Logistics Manager

 

Mzwandile Stick


SARU Springboks Assistant Backline Coach

 

Rassie Erasmus


SARU Springboks Head Coach

 

The team behind the Springboks


Ryen Etzebeth

Eben Etzebeth's brother

Ryen and Eben have been best friends forever. Ryen is considered a mentor and a rock in Eben's life and often goes to the field with him, to time him during fitness training. When they were still young boys, Ryen actually saved Eben's life while the pair were swimming in the sea. As brothers and best friends, it's evident that they would do anything for one another.

 

Peter Mohoje

Oupa Mohoje's father

Peter noticed Oupa's talent for rugby in high school while Oupa was playing in a tournament. Little did he realise that this potential woud see his son advance on to play for the Springboks. As a very proud father, Peter has the jersey from his son's first capping ceremony framed at home.

 

Oom Jan Siebert

Oupa' Mohoje's mentor

As Oupa Mohojé's high school coach, Jan says he has never seen a person work so hard to achieve his goals, whether in the gym or on the rugby field. He can still remember the days when Oupa was playing trials for Craven Week and says he is exceptionally proud that Oupa has reached his dream of becoming a Springbok.

 

Sheila Nombulelo Mbonambi & Mpinda Mbonambi

Bongi's mother & father

Sheila and Mpinda Mbonambi, Bongi Mbonambi's parents, were pivotal in the early stages of his rugby career and remain at the forefront of his support system. They made a lot of sacrifices to ensure that he could continue playing rugby and as Bongi's biggest supporters, they serve as constant motivators to him.

 

Eric Songwigi

Siya's Kolisi's school coach

Siya's first encounter with coach Eric was when his team played against the school Eric taught at. After the game, Eric approached Siya and told him that he had the potential to play rugby and that's where his belief that he could do anything was born.

 

Andrew Hayidakis

Siya Kholisi's high school coach

Mr H as he is known to Siya, saw Siya's talent from a young age. He took him under his wing, offered him an education, and taught him rugby. He was Siya's headmaster and rugby coach and has remained his mentor and friend. "He taught me everything I know about rugby and instilled discipline and pride in me," says Siya.

 

Kuziva Mtawarira

Tendai Mtawarira's wife

Ku, as she is affectionately known, left her life in Zimbabwe, to move to Durban to build a solid grounding for her family. Kuziva and Tendai have two beautiful children, aged 7 and 5.

 

André Truter

Jesse Kriel's first coach

André Truter introduced Jesse to rugby and was his team's coach at Underberg Primary School. He sponsored the jerseys for the team out of his own pocket, drove the team to games in a minibus and helped the ones who could not afford rugby gear. He still sees Jesse and is so proud of the Springbok he has become.

 

It takes more than 15 players to grow from grassroots to greatness


FNB became the financial partner of the Springboks in 2017, with the FNB logo proudly displaying on the back of the Springbok jersey above the playing number. Staying true to our slogan "How can we help you?", we are committed to supporting South African sports at all levels - from grassroots to greatness.

Starting at high school level, our FNB Classic Clashes tournament identifies and exposes raw sports talent, as well as evoke a sense of pride in the participating learners. FNB Classic Clashes has given school sport a whole new meaning, and the sponsorship continues to inspire a new generation of developing sports stars.

To further help build the future of South African rugby, FNB also supports the development of rugby talent at universities with the FNB Varsity Cup. Young rugby players are able to showcase their talent on a national stage while having an opportunity to be scouted and make the transition from the amateur to the professional rugby ranks.

Both the FNB Classic Clashes and Varsity Cup have produced players that have gone on to become professional rugby players.

FNB's sponsorship of Classic Clashes, Varsity Cup and their partnership with the Springboks hopes to unearth even more talent while they continue to support the development of South African rugby and other sporting codes.

Faye Mfikwe, FNB Chief Marketing Officer says: "As a proudly South African brand, we believe that this partnership symbolises our commitment to nation-building. As proven in South Africa over the last 20 years, sport has the amazing power to unite a nation, and there's no better representation of this than the Springboks' historic Rugby World Cup victories in 1995 and 2007."

Mfikwe says the timing of the partnership is perfectly in tune with the bank's renewed commitment to help every South African help themselves. She says the bank continues to demonstrate this commitment through its solutions as well as sponsorship properties which play a vital role in the development of grassroots talent.

"The ultimate dream for many young hopefuls is to be given the honour of representing their national team and our grassroots platforms are increasingly playing an important role in facilitating the realisation of such aspirations. To date, our sponsorship properties have enabled 30 young players to represent South Africa on the international stage in Springbok colours.

"The partnership with the Springboks is the pinnacle of our journey and as a brand, we remain committed to making a positive contribution that will take the country forward," Mfikwe concludes.

Proudly supporting


Greatness

FNB became the financial partner of the Springboks in 2017, with the FNB logo proudly displaying on the back of the Springbok jersey above the playing number. Staying true to our slogan "How can we help you?", we are committed to supporting South African sports at all levels - from grassroots to greatness.

Starting at high school level, our FNB Classic Clashes tournament identifies and exposes raw sports talent, as well as evoke a sense of pride in the participating learners. FNB Classic Clashes has given school sport a whole new meaning, and the sponsorship continues to inspire a new generation of developing sports stars.

 

An insight into the

Springboks

Guiding the team with

SARU

The team behind the

Springboks