Springbok star Etzebeth named South African Player of Year

Springbok star Etzebeth named South African Player of Year

Springbok lock Eben Etzebeth was on Thursday night named South Africa's Rugby Player of the Year for 2023 – a year in which the Springboks successfully defended their World Cup title.

Eben "The En4cer" Etzebeth

Etzebeth, 32, won the award for the second successive year, edging out fellow World Cup-winners Pieter-Steph du Toit, Siya Kolisi, Frans Malherbe and Damian Willemse.

All five played key roles in South Africa's successful defence of their World Cup title in France last year.

The 2.07m (6.79ft) Etzebeth was a towering presence for the Springboks in their World Cup campaign where they defeated New Zealand 12-11 in the final.


He was one of four nominees for World Rugby Player of the Year, a title that was won by New Zealand's Ardie Savea.

"This award is about the team. All the players are role models. It doesn't matter where you come from," he said about the racially diverse team which lifted the Webb Ellis trophy.

Etzebeth is currently out of action after undergoing knee surgery last month.

Canan Moodie, 21, was named Young Player of the Year for the second successive year.

Moodie played for the Springboks at wing and centre in three matches during the World Cup but did not appear in the final.

The Springboks were named team of the year while Springbok coach Jacques Nienaber was the coach of the year. Nienaber announced that he would step down after the World Cup and is currently coaching Leinster in Ireland.

Flyhalf Manie Libbok won the award for the fans' player of the year.

Springbok wing Cheslin Kolbe took the fans' moment of the year award for his charge-down of an attempted conversion by France's Thomas Ramos in a World Cup quarter-final which the Springboks won 29-28.



Show's Stories