Revealed: Why Tambwe and Tshituka brothers didn't make Bok cut
Springbok team selections will never please everybody. They are simply too subjective.
However, the absence of certain in-form players always raises and warrants questions.
It was the same with the announcement by Jacques Nienaber of his 43-man squad for South Africa’s international campaign.
Among the names of in-form players missing from the ‘draft’ were those of Bulls wing Madosh Tambwe and the Lions’ Tshituka brothers – Emmanuel & Vincent.
The Bok boss made it clear that, currently, none of the trio is eligible – because they are not South African citizens.
“Madosh is not [eligible],” Nienaber told a virtual media briefing this week, adding: “He is not a South African citizen.
“Until he gets citizenship he is not [eligible].
“The same applies to the two Tshituka brothers [Emmanuel and Vincent].
“There are lots of speculation about Madosh [Tambwe] and the Tshituka brothers.
“The reason why they can’t be selected is that they are not South African citizens.
“The Tshituka brothers are busy with the process [of getting SA citizenship. I am not sure if Madosh is.”
It is not the first time that the eligibility ‘requirement’ influenced the Bok selection.
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Back in 2009 record-breaking prop Tendai Mtawarira was declared ‘ineligible’ because he was not a South African citizen.
He had made his Bok debut against Wales in 2008 and was a star performer for the Boks in the victorious 2009 series against the British and Irish Lions.
However, the player – affectionately known as ‘Beast’, who was born and schooled in Zimbabwe – was called out by the sports ministry.
“We must state up front our admiration for the gifted Zimbabwean prop forward,” the ministry said in a statement back in 2009, adding: “He is a live wire on the rugby field.
“But just like he must obey the rules of rugby on the field, he must comply with the laws of South Africa in life here on our land, like all of us.
“According to the President as well as the CEO of the SARU, ‘The Beast’ is not a citizen of South Africa. He does not even have a permit for permanent residence in South Africa.”
Mtawarira then went through the process and was granted South African citizenship the following year.
“The ministry congratulates the Beast on his becoming a South African citizen, as well as the South African Rugby Union for acquiring his services,” then sports minister Makhenkesi Stofile said in a statement in 2010.
Tambwe, 25, was born in Kinshasa, Zaire, and schooled at Parktown Boys’ High School, in Johannesburg.
The Tshituka brothers were born in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and schooled at Northcliff High in Johannesburg.