DURBAN - It’s official. Springbok captain Siya Kolisi is a Shark and will be for at least the next three years after signing on the dotted line today at Jonsson Kings Park.
A beaming Kolisi, resplendent in his newly issued Sharks casual wear, said he felt like a kid starting his first day of school.
“There is tremendous excitement for me to relaunch my career in a new city with a new team after a very difficult post-World Cup year when I could not get going because of injuries and Covid hitting my family,” he said at a press conference at the Shark Tank where he was introduced to the media by Sharks CEO Eduard Coetzee.
Coetzee said that the immediate plan for Kolisi is to support him every possible way to get back to playing his best rugby.
“We will create an environment that will take the pressure off Siya and allow him to thrive,” Coetzee said. “We will not burden him with captaincy although the world knows he is one of the best leaders in sport. Lukhanyo Am will continue as captain and Siya will be allowed to concentrate solely on playing rugby.”
The 29-year-old Kolisi said the move to Durban from Cape Town presented a massive change in his life but one he can’t wait to embrace.
“I regard this as starting my career all over again,” he said. “I have a deep hunger to earn the respect of my new teammates. I am happy to prove myself all over again in what I see as a great move for my career. I am my biggest critic and I know what I have to do to get back to my best, and that means rolling up my sleeves and fighting for a place in the Sharks team. I can’ wait to get my head down and get on with the business of playing rugby.”
Kolisis said he is fully free of the hamstring and knee injures that have dogged him over the last year or so and will be in the starting blocks when the Sharks resume training on Monday for the new season