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Cheslin Kolbe
Date of birth (1993-10-28) 28 October 1993 (age 30)
Place of birth Kraaifontein, Cape Province, Republic of South Africa
Height 1.71 m (5 ft 7+12 in)
Weight 80 kg (180 lb; 12 st 8 lb)
School Hoërskool Brackenfell
University UFS
Rugby union career
Position(s) Wing / Fullback / Fly-half
Current team Toulon
Youth Career
2009–2012 [[{{{tan}}}|{{{t}}}]]
Senior career
Years Team Apps (Points)
2012–2017 [[{{{tan}}}|{{{t}}}]] 46 (65)
2013–2017 [[{{{tan}}}|{{{t}}}]] 49 (74)
2017–2021 Toulouse 82 (172)
2021–present Toulon 14 (25)
Correct as of 26 June 2021
National team(s)
Years Team Apps (Points)
2013 South Africa U20 5 (10)
2015–2016 South Africa Sevens 30 (113)
2018– South Africa 20 (50)
Correct as of 16 July 2022

Cheslin Kolbe (born 28 October 1993) is a South African professional rugby union player who currently plays for the South Africa national team and for [[{{{tan}}}|{{{t}}}]] in the Top 14 in France. His regular position is wing, but he also plays at fullback. He has also recently featured at fly half for Toulouse in the top 14, and as a scrum half for the Boks. Kolbe was a member of the South Africa Sevens team that won a bronze medal at the 2016 Summer Olympics. He was a member of the South Africa team that won the 2019 Rugby World Cup. Playing at right wing, he scored South Africa's second try in the final minutes of the final.

Kolbe was nominated for 2019 World Rugby Player of the Year but lost to South Africa teammate Pieter-Steph du Toit. He is widely regarded as one of the best players in the world. He previously played for Toulouse in the Top14, the Stormers in super rugby, and Western Province in the Currie Cup. He has won the World Cup, Rugby Championship, and Lions Series with the Boks, the Top14, and Champions Cup with Toulouse, and Currie Cup with the Western Province.

He is contracted until 2024 with RC Toulonnais. He has scored 9 tries in 18 tests for South Africa. He is one of the fastest rugby players ever with a 10.70 for the 100m. He is famous for his small size, but brilliant finishing skills, pace, and side stepping ability. He is part of Roc Nation, the Gilbert rugby family, Laureus, and Nike. He is the SA players player of the year 2021.

Youth rugby

Kolbe played for Hoërskool Brackenfell. He represented [[{{{tan}}}|{{{t}}}]] at various youth levels, from the Under-16 Grant Khomo Week in 2009 to the 2012 Under-21 Provincial Championship.

Club career

Western Province

He made his provincial first class debut in their Vodacom Cup match against [[{{{tan}}}|{{{t}}}]]. and a month later he was named on the bench for the [[{{{tan}}}|{{{t}}}]] for their Super Rugby game against the [[{{{tan}}}|{{{t}}}]].

In October 2013 he was part of the Western Province team that won the Currie Cup by beating the Lions 19-16.

He penned a three-year deal to remain at Western Province until 2016.


Kolbe moved to France to join Top 14 side [[{{{tan}}}|{{{t}}}]] for the 2017–2018 season. Kolbe received a call-up to the South Africa national team for the 2018 Rugby Championship. He made his debut for South Africa against Australia on 8 September, during Round Three of the competition, coming on in the 33rd minute as an injury replacement for Makazole Mapimpi, in a match that South Africa lost 18–23.

In June 2019 Kolbe started for Stade Toulousain in the Top 14 final winning the French Championship. In 2021 Kolbe won both the European Cup and the Top 14 with Toulouse.

International career

Kolbe made his test debut in 2018 and played an important part in Springboks winning the 2019 Rugby Championship. On 2 November, Kolbe was part of the 2019 World-Cup winning team in Japan, scoring a try late in the second half of the Final against England. Kolbe was again instrumental in the 2021 British & Irish Lions tour to South Africa, starting in all three test matches and the South Africa A match. Kolbe scored the Springboks' only try in the third and deciding test of the tour to propel South Africa to a series win.

South Africa Under-20

In 2013, he was included in the training group that toured Argentina in preparation for the 2013 IRB Junior World Championship. He was then included in the squad for the 2013 IRB Junior World Championship.

National sevens team

Between 2012 and 2017, he represented the South Africa Sevens team. In 2013, he was included in the squad for the 2013 Rugby World Cup Sevens. Kolbe was included in a 12-man squad for the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. He was named as a substitute for their first match in Group B of the competition against Spain, with South Africa winning the match 24–0.


Western Province

  • 2014 Currie Cup winner


South Africa

  • 2019 Rugby Championship winner
  • 2019 Rugby World Cup winner
  • 2019 World Rugby Men's 15s Player of the Year nominee
  • 2021 British & Irish Lions tour to South Africa winner

South Africa 7's

  • 2016 Olympics Bronze medal

Test Match record

Against P W D L Tri Pts  %Won
 Argentina 2 2 0 0 1 5 100
 Australia 2 1 0 1 0 0 50
 British and Irish Lions 3 2 0 1 1 5 66.67
 England 1 1 0 0 1 5 100
 France 1 1 0 0 0 0 100
 Italy 1 1 0 0 2 10 100
 Japan 2 2 0 0 2 10 100
 New Zealand 4 1 1 2 2 10 25
 Scotland 1 1 0 0 0 0 100
 Wales 1 0 0 1 0 0 0
Total 18 12 1 5 9 45 66.67

Pld = Games Played, W = Games Won, D = Games Drawn, L = Games Lost, Tri = Tries Scored, Pts = Points Scored

Test tries (10)

Tries Opposition Location Venue Competition Date Result
1  New Zealand Wellington, New Zealand Westpac Stadium 2018 Rugby Championship 15 September 2018 Won 36–34
1  New Zealand Pretoria, South Africa Loftus Versfeld 2018 Rugby Championship 6 October 2018 Lost 30–32
1  Argentina Salta, Argentina Estadio Padre Ernesto Martearena 2019 Rugby Championship 10 August 2019 Won 46–13
2  Japan Kumagaya, Japan Kumagaya Rugby Stadium Test match 6 September 2019 Won 41–7
2  Italy Fukuroi, Japan Shizuoka Stadium 2019 Rugby World Cup 4 October 2019 Won 49–3
1  England Yokohama, Japan International Stadium Yokohama 2019 Rugby World Cup Final 2 November 2019 Won 32–12
1  British and Irish Lions Cape Town, South Africa Cape Town Stadium 2021 British & Irish Lions tour 7 August 2021 Won 19–16
1  Wales Pretoria, South Africa Loftus Versfeld Stadium 2022 Wales tour 2 July 2022 Won 32–29

Personal life

Kolbe is a cousin of South African track and field sprinter Wayde van Niekerk, who won the gold medal in the 400 metres at the 2016 Olympics and is the current 300m and 400m world record holder.

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Cheslin Kolbe para niños

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