Former Springbok hooker Schalk Brits said he will have very keen interest in the tour, having represented English club Saracens for almost a decade. Photo: Michael Sherman
Former Springbok hooker Schalk Brits said he will have very keen interest in the tour, having represented English club Saracens for almost a decade. Photo: Michael Sherman

In their eyes, it will be payback time - Bok hooker Brits on Lions tour

By ANA Time of article published Jun 1, 2020

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JOHANNESBURG – Springbok hookers Bongi Mbonambi and Malcolm Marx are eager to face the British and Irish on their tour to South Africa in 2021.

Looking at the schedule of eight matches, which includes three Tests, Brits believes the tourists will view their trip as “payback time” after they suffered a 2-1 series defeat in 2009, which was also the last time a British & Irish Lions time lost a series.

The third member of the hooker-trio who helped South Africa to Rugby World Cup glory in Japan in 2019, Schalk Brits, retired after the Springboks lifted the Webb Ellis Cup for the third time in the International Stadium, Yokohama.

Malcolm Marx in action for the Springboks Photo: Christian Hartmann/Reuters
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Speaking on the SA Rugby Podcast, the 39-year-old Brits said he will have very keen interest in the tour, having represented English club Saracens for almost a decade after joining them from the Cape Town-based Stormers in 2009.

“Combining what we have to offer here in South Africa with rugby is massive. The Lions are a very special outfit, a Lions tour only comes around every 12 years in South Africa, so from that perspective, it’s very exciting,” said Brits.

“I know the UK boys are frothing at the mouth to come and play here for the Lions against South Africa. I think they will view it as payback time for the previous Lions tour defeat.

“For them, playing the Rugby World Cup winners in South Africa will be an exciting challenge and I think they will be a very dangerous outfit.”

Bongi Mbonambi is looking forward to the British and Irish Lions tour. Photo: BackpagePix

Mbonambi, who started the Rugby World Cup playoff matches in the No 2 jersey but had to leave the field in the final early due to an injury, was still at school when the Lions visited South Africa in 2009.

“I was in high school and watched all the games on TV because unfortunately, I couldn’t attend any of the matches,” said Mbonambi.

“I still have memories of guys such as ‘Beast’ Mtawarira, Bryan Habana and all those legendary Springboks in action against the Lions. I made it my goal to (one day) be part of something special like that.

“I think it is the goal of every South African rugby player to be play against the Lions.”

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The powerful Marx is just as excited for next year’s tour.

“My biggest memory of the 2009 Lions tour was when Jaque Fourie scored in the corner (at Loftus Versfeld) to clinch the series,” he said.

“The tour only comes around every 12 years for us here in South Africa, so it will be a great honour for me to play against them and to experience that.” 

* More information on the revised sale dates for the ticket ballots as well as the supporter travel packages will be communicated in due course via www.springboks.rugby and www.lionstour.com/

* For more ticket information, contact [email protected]lionstour2021.co.za  


African News Agency (ANA)


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