Kolbe proves he’s all heart, humbly handing hope to the kids he ...


Kolbe proves he’s all heart, humbly handing hope to the kids he once was

Bok player on life in gangland, his desire to help its children and the work he put in to get to the top

Daniel Gallan

Cheslin Kolbe has been sidestepping trouble all his life.

His most famous shimmy was in Yokohama, Japan, last year, when he turned England's captain, Owen Farrell, into a Ferris wheel en route to a World Cup-clinching try for SA, but while the sporting stakes were perilously high that day, they were nothing compared to the afternoon in Cape Town, many years previously, when his jet heels may well have saved his life.

Back then, Kolbe would spend most afternoons in a park between his parents’ and grandmother’s houses in Scottsville, a small suburb of Kraaifontein on the northern edge of Cape Town. It was a haven for drug dealers and violent gang members, and Kolbe had grown used to witnessing drug deals and minor scuffles...

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