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Makazole Mapimpi

Learn everything you need to know about Springboks hero Makazole Mapimpi right here on Rugby365

Makazole Mapimpi Biography

A rugby player that embodies perseverance and willpower, Makazole Mapimpi’s journey to Springbok stardom is as inspirational a story as they come.

The modest wing grew up and was housed in Tsholomnqa village, a rural area in Mdantsane, East London. Unlike many of his Springbok counterparts, he didn’t attend any major rugby school and was in no position to be scouted for his ability.

Makazole Mapimpi came from, quite possibly, the harshest personal conditions any Springbok has had to endure in order to succeed. He was raised by his grandmother as his mother, brother, and sister had all tragically passed on by the time he was a household name.

His local rugby encounters were beyond the reaches of even regional rugby matches.

Eventually, the speed-studded wing started his career at Border Bulldogs Under-19. Despite putting in some solid performances in the local outfit, the two years and 50+ appearances he spent playing for the first XV was met with numerous defeats. 

Fortunately, he had no major injuries during this time, besides perhaps his pride.

Amidst those beatings were whispers that one day Makazole Mapimpi would be a Springbok. The wing shrugged them off, assuming the Border Bulldogs was as good as it could get for someone from the townships in East London.

It was in 2017 that the winds began to favour Makazole Mapimpi’s sails.

Backing himself for his run at professional rugby paid off when he joined the Southern Kings in 2017. Born in July 1990, the Rugby World Cup-winner made his first appearance in premier division rugby when he was turning 27. He showcased his class by scoring 11 tries in 14 appearances. 

He moved to the Cheetahs and a year later, the Sharks, while securing a spot for the World Cup Springbok team. His natural predatory instincts saw him score a flurry of tries for both franchises.

His try-scoring talent made him the first Springbok to score a try in a World Cup final. He bagged a total of six tries in the prestigious tournament.

In 2021, Makazole Mapimpi began playing for the Red Hurricanes in Japan.

Among all the hardship and suffering the Springbok wing has encountered, his story is that of hope for future generations. That as long as we have willpower and determination, we too can overcome.


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