Siya Kolisi will lead Springboks in British & Irish Lions series

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There was some confusion on Saturday evening when no captain was named during the announcement of a 46-man Springbok squad to face the British & Irish Lions in their three-Test series.

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In contrast, the British & Irish Lions named Alun Wyn Jones as their leader before naming the remainder of their travelling party.

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While many would have assumed Siya Kolisi would remain in the role, who really knows in rugby these days!

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Kolisi led the Springboks in their last Test – the 2019 Rugby World Cup final in Japan – and was substituted as early as the 63rd minute by then coach Rassie Erasmus for Francois Louw.

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It will be exactly 20 months since that memorable day when the Springboks next take to the field in a clash against Georgia on 2 July.

Nienaber was asked at the post-announcement press conference whether Kolisi would still be the man to don the captain’s armband.

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“Yes, yes, 100%,” confirmed Nienaber.

“We didn’t announce him (as captain), but nothing has changed,” he explained.

Since winning the 2019 World Cup, Kolisi was involved in a high profile switch from the Cape to KwaZulu-Natal and these days calls the Sharks “home”.

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The Springboks certainly don’t lack for depth at loose forward with no fewer than NINE flanks and No 8s named in the squad: Dan du Preez, Jean-Luc du Preez, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Rynhardt Elstadt, Siya Kolisi, Kwagga Smith, Marco van Staden, Duane Vermeulen and Jasper Wiese.

In addition, Marcell Coetzee was widely regarded at the biggest casualty.

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SPRINGBOK 46-MAN SQUAD:

Forwards

Thomas du Toit, Steven Kitshoff, Vincent Koch, Frans Malherbe, Ox Nche, Trevor Nyakane, Coenie Oosthuizen, Joseph Dweba, Malcolm Marx, Bongi Mbonambi, Scarra Ntubeni, Lood de Jager, Eben Etzebeth, Nicolaas Janse van Rensburg, Franco Mostert, Marvin Orie, RG Snyman, Dan du Preez, Jean-Luc du Preez, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Rynhardt Elstadt, Siya Kolisi, Kwagga Smith, Marco van Staden, Duane Vermeulen, Jasper Wiese

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Backs

Faf de Klerk, Herschel Jantjies, Sanele Nohamba, Cobus Reinach, Elton Jantjies, Handre Pollard, Morne Steyn, Lukhanyo Am, Damian de Allende, Jesse Kriel, Wandisile Simelane, Frans Steyn, Aphelele Fassi, Cheslin Kolbe, Willie le Roux, Makazole Mapimpi, Sbu Nkosi, Yaw Penxe, Rosko Specman, Damian Willemse 

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