Thousands of sports fans around the world have voted South African rugby player Siya Kolisi as winner of the July Laureus Sporting Moment of the Month competition. This means he will be a contender for the annual award.
Kolisi’s ‘moment’ came when he stepped onto the field in Johannesburg in June 2018, as the first black African player to captain the Springboks. He was leading the team against England in what he said was a “huge privilege and an honour”.
Laureus said “Siya’s appointment as captain was historic moment for the unity of the once divided country.
Kolisi, who grew up in poverty but still made it to the top, said: “I can’t stand here and say I represent this one group. I represent the whole of South Africa.”
What made Kolisi’s moment even more special was that, as he ran onto that field – he was wearing the iconic No. 6 jersey… just like that worn by the first Patron of Laureus – former President Nelson Mandela – at the historic 1995 Rugby World Cup Final… which was at the same venue!
As voted by you, the inspiring journey of Siya Kolisi to Springboks captain wins the #LaureusSportingMoment for the month of July! 🏉🇿🇦Congratulations Siya! 🙌
Posted by Laureus on Wednesday, August 1, 2018
The Laureus Sporting Moment Award is about qualities like fair play, sportsmanship, drama and dedication – those inspiring, emotional moments that symbolise the true value of sport and how it has the power to change the world.
Other nominees in this year’s Laureus Sporting Moment of the Year include ski jumping legends Sven Hannawald and Kamil Stoch, Doddie Weir, Rochdale football star Joe Thompson, and Chinese double-amputee Xia Boyu who climbed Mt Everest.