"People had obviously high expectations and everything, and I think seeing myself in newspapers every single day, it's something I wasn't used to.
"My game went a little bit down, and it was tough. You can see with the stats and stuff. Even the coach would tell you that my game wasn't up to standard.
"When they announced it, it was like I'd never seen anything like that in South Africa. The people were happy and going crazy. So, when that happened, I think it affected me a lot with my game, because it was a lot. It was really a lot."
Since then, though, Kolisi has returned to form and the Boks are looking a side capable of competing for the trophy at this year's Rugby World Cup in Japan.
"We've broken through some barriers I thought we couldn't do," said Kolisi.
"The respect is back in the Springbok jersey.
"I think we're getting it right without trying. We're not trying to be something. It's just coming. It's working for us because we're a young team and we get along so well. And we just want to grow. We want to make sure that the Springboks are the best.
"I think we have a possible chance of winning the World Cup."