Springboks captain Siya Kolisi will join French club Racing 92 after the 2023 Rugby World Cup, Sharks have confirmed.
The Sharks confirmed the news on Tuesday, adding that the player has been granted an early release from his contract.
“The Sharks can confirm that Siya Kolisi has been granted an early release from his contract, to join French club Racing 92 after the 2023 Rugby World Cup,” the club announced.
“The Springbok captain joined the Cell C Sharks in 2021, and he has quickly become an integral member of the team. He has naturally served in a key leadership role and was recently appointed as captain for the Heineken Champions Cup. He will leave with the full blessing of the Cell Sharks when he bids the team farewell after this year’s World Cup,” the statement further reads.
Siya Kolisi ongoing contribution
Sharks CEO Dr Eduard Coetzee stated that the club looks forward to Kolisi’s ongoing contributions to the squad for the rest of the season before wishing him well in his future career.
“Siya has been an instrumental and much-loved member of the Cell C Sharks family since his arrival two years ago. His well-documented and commendable leadership qualities extends far beyond the playing field and this is none more so evident than his involvement with the launch of the Players First programme, as well as his commitment in the expansion of The Sharks brand to a global market.
“His move to France is a new and exciting opportunity and we could not be happier for him. We are blessed to have him don the black and white jersey and we know that over the next few months, he will continue to give back to the team and our fans.”
This multi-year signing is part of a broader long-term collaboration between the Cell C Sharks and Racing 92, with the two clubs having come to an amicable agreement, while they also look forward to continuing to build a mutually beneficial relationship in the future.
The collaboration will involve quarterly meetings of owners and management, and an exchange of ideas about player sharing, coaching expertise and branding. Racing 92 will become part of the global network of relationships being established by the Sharks as it seeks to expand the brand in Europe and the North American market in the years leading up to the 2031 Rugby World Cup.
Siya Kolisi’s reaction
Kolisi thanked the team for enabling him to take up this new challenge from the 2023-24 season onwards.
“It has been an incredible collaborative effort between The Sharks and Racing 92 that has enabled me to start a new chapter in my career after the 2023 World Cup. I want to give a massive thanks to the Cell C Sharks for welcoming me with open arms in 2021, and for making me feel so at home in Durban, while their support over the last couple of years has been hugely influential during a key period in my career. I am immensely appreciative that the Sharks have given me their blessing to make this move, and it goes without saying that I will continue to give my all for the team over the next few months.”
Looking ahead Coetzee added: “Over the last two years, our focus has been on building strong depth in our squad, and we look forward to our upcoming games and watching the Cell C Sharks team play to their full potential.”iy