Springboks

OBITUARY | Silas Nkanunu: A man of integrity, who presided over a difficult time in SA rugby

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Silas Nkanunu and Louis Luyt.
Silas Nkanunu and Louis Luyt.
(Wessel Oosthuizen/Gallo Images)

When Silas Nkanunu took over the reins at the then South African Rugby Football Union (Sarfu) from Louis Luyt, it marked the start of a period of rapid tetchiness regarding the thorny transformation matter.

Maybe it was because, as the governing organisation’s first black president, it was automatically assumed that his entry into the top office in rugby would translate to black players following him into the Springbok team.

That was not immediately the case and it took a lot boardroom battles to make it so. After the sun had set on the 1995 "Madiba Moment" that saw Chester Williams form part of the victorious Rugby World Cup Springboks, many thought black players were ripe for entry, not just in dribs and drabs but droves, into the Boks.

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