Siya Kolisi

When Siya Kolisi was named Springbok captain on 28 May 2018, a nation caught its breath.

As the Springbok’s first black captain, the inspirational flanker’s appointment represented a special moment in our country’s rugby history when, for the first time since1995, the sport looks set to become a force that truly unites all South Africans.

With Kolisi set to debut as captain in a crunch encounter with England in early June, Supersport asked T+W to produce something unique to celebrate the appointment and recognise its significance for both the sport and South Africa.

In our work, we wanted to reflect the unique journey Kolisi has taken to the captaincy and show something of the man’s own character.

We spent time shooting interviews and additional footage in Port Elizabeth’s Zwide township, where Kolisi grew up and got his start in rugby, to combine with footage from our recent interview with the new skipper.

We also decided to narrate the entire 90-second script in isiXhosa, Siya’s first language, as a tribute to the man, and in honour of the rich heritage of black rugby in theEastern Cape.

With an introduction delivered in the style of a traditional royal praise singer, the result is a film that quietly disrupts many deeply held notions of what South African rugby is supposed to look and sound like.

Rather like the man it was made to honour.