Siya Kolisi will captain the Springboks for the first time against England. Photo: Gavin Barker/BackpagePix

CAPE TOWN – Stormers flank Siya Kolisi will lead the Springboks for the first time in his career in the three-Test series against England in June.

SA Rugby made the announcement on Monday morning via their Twitter account @Springboks.

Kolisi has led the Stormers for the past few years, and was one of the real contenders to take over the reins in the absence of the injured Warren Whiteley and Eben Etzebeth.

His appointment will be regarded as a breakthrough for transformation in South African rugby, as he will become the first black Bok captain in the Test arena.

Meanwhile, coach Rassie Erasmus has chosen Kolisi’s Stormers teammate Pieter-Steph du Toit to take charge of the Boks for the one-off Test against Wales in Washington DC on Saturday.

“It’s a huge honour to captain the Springboks, and Siya and Pieter-Steph are two honest, hard-working men who enjoy the respect of their fellow players,” Erasmus said in a statement on Monday morning.

“I believe both of them will do a good job as captains. My philosophy is that each player must take responsibility for his position, and must therefore work extremely hard with that one goal in mind – to make the Springboks successful again.”

SA Rugby said that only Frans Steyn and Bismarck du Plessis have yet to join the Bok camp due to French club commitments, and they will arrive in Johannesburg next Monday.

Erasmus also named a 26-man squad that will travel to Washington on Wednesday to take on Wales.

Kolisi will not make the trip to the US, while none of the overseas-based players are eligible to play as the Wales Test is outside of the international window.

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A number of the uncapped players such as scrumhalves Ivan van Zyl, Embrose Papier and Cameron Wright, wing Makazole Mapimpi and prop Ox Nche were included.

Springbok squad to face Wales

Forwards (16): Nizaam Carr, Dan du Preez, Pieter-Steph du Toit (captain), Thomas du Toit, Jason Jenkins, Steven Kitshoff, Wilco Louw, Frans Malherbe, Bongi Mbonambi, Oupa Mohoje, Ox Nche, Sikhumbuzo Notshe, Marvin Orie, Chiliboy Ralepelle, Kwagga Smith, Akker van der Merwe.

Backs (10): Curwin Bosch, André Esterhuizen, Warrick Gelant, Travis Ismaiel, Elton Jantjies, Jesse Kriel, Makazole Mapimpi, Embrose Papier, Ivan van Zyl, Cameron Wright.

 

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