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Family central to Siya Kolisi’s career-best form: ‘Once my heart is happy, I do my job well’

Siya Kolisi. (Photo by Steve Bardens/Getty Images)

Siya Kolisi. (Photo by Steve Bardens/Getty Images)

  • Siya Kolisi says his family being with him in Durban full-time is the reason for his outstanding season form.
  • Kolisi moved from the Stormers to the Sharks in 2021, where he’s had to adjust to a different city, franchise and style of play.
  • The Springbok World Cup-winning captain is in his last season at Kings Park after signing with French club Racing 92.

Siya Kolisi attributed his astounding Springboks and Sharks form to his family joining him full-time in Durban last year.

Kolisi moved from the Stormers to the Sharks in 2021, where he’s had to adjust to a different city, franchise and style of play.

But the Bok captain is arguably having his career-best season on the field and came close to being the SA Rugby Player of the Year, where he lost out to best friend and teammate Eben Etzebeth.

READ | Siya Kolisi rises above loss, violence, substance abuse, and infidelity in new ‘bio epic’

Kolisi has not only been dynamic in open play but has brought a physical intensity that has sometimes lacked due to the odd injury and having to get back to speed fitness-wise.

But, since the United Rugby Championship (URC) and Champions Cup began, mostly in the latter, Kolisi has delivered outstanding displays, as he did for the Springboks in 2022.

“My family wasn’t staying with me but they are in Durban now, which has made a big difference,” Kolisi told New24 in Gqeberha, where he launched his new biopic, Rise: The Siya Kolisi Story.

“My heart … once my heart is happy, I can do my job well. I don’t know, maybe I am fitter than I have been.

“But my drive has never changed. I’ve enjoyed myself, yes.

“I’ve been playing the same way but what I think’s happening now is that I have the ball in my hands more and people aren’t used to seeing me with ball in hand, which is what I grew up doing.

“People who know me from the township (Zwide) say that this is the Siya they know, when I’m playing like this.

“But when I play for the Boks, I’m asked to do a different job to the Sharks.”

Kolisi, who was named the Sharks’ Champions Cup captain, is enjoying a break from rugby and isn’t likely to feature against the Stormers on Friday.

The Sharks have carefully managed their Springboks throughout the twin tournaments, which has paid dividends after they secured a favourable home draw in the Champions Cup round of 16 against Munster.

Should they progress, they’ll also host a home quarter-final, against either the Bulls or French club Toulouse.

The Sharks are also recovering their URC campaign after beating Edinburgh in Scotland last weekend, the only South African team to claim a win overseas.

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