Springboks

Kolisi 'feeling good' as knee recovery continues

2019-08-30 11:56
Siya Kolisi (Gallo)
Siya Kolisi (Gallo)

Cape Town - Springbok captain Siya Kolisi says he is "feeling good" in his efforts to reach 100% match fitness ahead of the 2019 World Cup opener against the All Blacks in Yokohama on September 21. 

Kolisi's participation at the showpiece had been threatened by a serious knee injury that he picked up during the 2019 Super Rugby season, but the 28-year-old recovered in time to be named in coach Rassie Erasmus' 31-man squad that will leave for Japan on Friday. 

Kolisi made his return in a 24-18 win over Argentina at Loftos on August 17, where he started and played 50 minutes before being substituted. 

With time running out, Kolisi now has just one match left to get fully fit for the All Blacks and that will come when the Boks take on tournament hosts Japan in a warm-up fixture in Kumagaya on September 6. 

Kolisi knows that he still has some hard work ahead in the next few weeks to reach prime condition, but he believes he is on the right track. 

"I'm feeling really good," he said at a press briefing in Johannesburg on Thursday on the eve of the squad's departure to Japan. 

"I was really worried about it (the injury) at the time and I was under a lot of pressure from myself after watching the other guys play.

"The great thing is that I was with the squad until they left for tour and coach kept me with the rest of the team.

"I was watching the plays and I was in team meetings, so I was quite involved, but it was just a waiting period to see how the knee holds."

Kolisi says he was not overly pleased with his performance in that match against the Pumas, but he was delighted to get the game time under his belt. 

"It held up very well. It was obviously not the best (performance) but I was happy," he said.

"These past couple of weeks have been helping, training-wise. We've got next week and the week after and then hopefully I will get to where I need to be."

Kolisi, who has 42 Test caps to his name, is expected to wear the No 6 jersey at the World Cup to form the loose trio alongside Pieter-Steph du Toit and Duane Vermeulen. 

Springboks' 31-man Rugby World Cup squad:

Forwards (17)

Schalk Brits (Bulls), Lood de Jager (Bulls), Pieter-Steph du Toit (Stormers), Eben Etzebeth (Stormers), Steven Kitshoff (Stormers), Vincent Koch (Saracens, England), Siya Kolisi (captain, Stormers), Francois Louw (Bath, England), Frans Malherbe (Stormers), Malcolm Marx (Lions), Bongi Mbonambi (Stormers), Tendai Mtawarira (Sharks), Franco Mostert (Gloucester, England), Trevor Nyakane (Bulls), Kwagga Smith (Lions), RG Snyman (Bulls), Duane Vermeulen (Bulls)

Backs (14)

Lukhanyo Am (Sharks), Damian de Allende (Stormers), Faf de Klerk (Sale Sharks, England), Warrick Gelant (Bulls), Elton Jantjies (Lions), Herschel Jantjies (Stormers), Cheslin Kolbe (Toulouse, France), Jesse Kriel (Bulls), Makazole Mapimpi (Sharks), S'bu Nkosi (Sharks), Willie le Roux (Wasps, England), Handre Pollard (Bulls), Cobus Reinach (Northampton Saints, England), Frans Steyn (Montpellier, France)

Read more on:    springboks  |  rwc 2019  |  siya kolisi  |  rugby

 

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