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Siya will go to the World Cup

NEWS: Springbok coach Jacques Nienaber has confirmed that Siyamthanda Kolisi will remain captain of the national side.

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The 31-year-old might very well make it to the World Cup, despite the serious knee injury that has kept him off the field since early May.

Nienaber told a media briefing in Cape Town on Thursday that they are backing Kolisi to recover fully for the World Cup, if he continues to hit the rehabilitation targets that have been set for him.

According to Nienaber, there is hope that Kolisi could recover in time for the Springboks’ first World Cup fixture – on Sunday, September 10 against Scotland in Marseilles.

Kolisi underwent surgery at the end of April after he sustained a partial tear to the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee playing for the Sharks against Ireland’s Munster.

According to Nienaber Kolisi remains captain of the Springboks and stand-in captains will cover for him during the Rugby Championship and pre-World Cup warm-up matches.

Nienaber said in 2019, when the Springboks won the World Cup in Japan, the captain was also in a race against time to recover in time following a knee injury he picked up while playing for the Stormers against the Highlanders in Super Rugby.

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Kolisi made his Test comeback against Argentina in Durban, a week after playing for Western Province in the Currie Cup and he was officially confirmed as Springbok captain for the 31-man squad that departed for the 2019 World Cup in Japan.

The Springboks kick off their 2023 season against Australia in Pretoria on July 8 in Pretoria in the opening round of the shortened Rugby Championship.

They then face New Zealand in Auckland on July 15 and return to South Africa for the final round of the Rugby Championship – where they face Argentina at Ellis Park on July 29 in their final match on home soil before the build-up to their World Cup defence starts.

The Boks will travel to Argentina to take on the Pumas at Velez Sarsfield, Buenos Aires, on August 5, followed by two more warm-up matches – Wales (August 19, Cardiff) and New Zealand (August 25, London).

RWC fixtures:

Sunday, 10 September – Springboks v Scotland (Stade Marseille, Marseille)
Sunday, 17 September – Springboks v Romania (Stade de Bordeaux, Bordeaux)
Saturday, 23 September – Springboks v Ireland (Stade de France, Paris)
Sunday, 1 October – Springboks v Tonga (Stade Marseille, Marseille)
Weekend of 14/15 October – quarterfinals
Weekend of 21/22 October – semifinals
Saturday, 28 October – Final

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