Currie Cup

Why Frans Steyn ditched a big Japan pay-day for Cheetahs: 'My choice has been made'

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Frans Steyn.
Frans Steyn.
(Frikkie Kapp/Gallo Images)
  • Frans Steyn ditched lucrative offers from Japan in favour of the Cheetahs by simply SMSing those suitors stating he's staying put. 
  • Family considerations weighed heavily in making his decision, Steyn amusingly revealing his daughter starts with horse riding lessons and he knows nothing about horses. 
  • Moreover, Steyn is simply keen to leave a lasting legacy at the Cheetahs, who seem like a burgeoning force again.

In his typically forthright manner, Frans Steyn simply sent a text message to tell his Japanese suitors that he's staying put in his beloved Bloemfontein.

The 35-year-old Springbok legend on Tuesday added more feel-good vibes to a burgeoning Cheetahs season by signing a contract extension till the end of 2023.

And, by all accounts, it wasn't all that difficult of a decision to make.

"I sent the Japanese clubs a SMS [on Tuesday morning]. I have nothing else to say. My choice has been made," Steyn revealed candidly.

Did he sacrifice a huge pay-day to stay in the City of Roses?

READ | 'Joyous' day for Cheetahs as Frans Steyn and Ruan Pienaar extend stays in Bloemfontein

"No, I know nothing."

Instead, Steyn's past two years at the Cheetahs has seen him grow immensely fond of the people at the franchise as well as enjoy the comforts that the city gives his family.

In fact, one of his three daughters played a major role in his decision.

"My daughter starts with horse riding lessons on June 1. I had to find someone ready to teach her. I know absolutely nothing about horses," Steyn said to hearty laughter.

"We all really enjoy it here. All the people are fantastic. More importantly, it's nice building towards something special here at the Cheetahs and to be a part of it.

"To work somewhere and feel that there's a place for you to prove your worth speaks louder than words. It's awesome for me to have a coffee daily with [former Bok stalwart] Ruan Pienaar and [Namibia prop] Aranos Coetzee and all the other guys I've gotten to know.

"If you accept an overseas offer now you have to uproot and start making acquaintances again. We're also keeping in consideration my retirement whenever that happens."

Naturally, there's an assumption that Steyn not only wants to claim a Currie Cup title victory with the Free Staters, but also appear in the Springbok Test against Wales in Bloemfontein in July.

Yet a few enquiries into his Green-and-Gold plans was deftly kicked into touch like his customary 50:22 kicks on the field.

"[Springbok matters] are another day's worries. First we need to win the Currie Cup, then we can start worrying about other things. I haven't even thought about the Boks yet," said Steyn.

"A title win here would be really special. I don't care what people say about the Currie Cup. It's still a great competition to play in."   

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