Sikhumbuzo Notshe has sounded his intentions to face the British & Irish Lions, saying it is an opportunity which comes about only once in a lifetime.
The 27-year-old Notshe knows that it is now or never if he is to face the Lions. The Sharks eighthman has six Springbok caps but last played for the Boks in 2018. He will be desperately hoping his domestic form will secure him a place in the Springbok squad.
‘I am not going to bulldust you – everybody wants to be involved in the Lions tour. We have had [Springbok] alignment camps and things were put out there, which I won’t share, about what is expected of us as rugby players.
‘Everybody wants to play. It only comes around every 12 years, so that makes it a generational thing. If you miss it, you miss it, and not a lot of players still playing have had the experience.’
Notshe is taking each day as it comes knowing that only excellent performances in the Rainbow Cup SA will be enough to sway the Springbok selectors.
‘It would be a huge honour for any player to be in action against the Lions but, to be honest with you, I am more worried about the Golden Lions right now rather than something in the future because if I don’t play well on Saturday against the local Lions, nothing will guarantee me playing against the touring Lions.
‘But I won’t bulldust you that South African players are not looking forward to the Lions tour because, as I mentioned, it doesn’t come around often. I was 16 when they were here in 2009, so if I miss it now I will never play against them.’
The Sharks kick off their second game in the Rainbow Cup SA against the Emirates Lions at Johnsson Kings Park at 4pm on Saturday.
The men from Durban got off to a winning start against the Stormers in the opening round of the competition and will hope to continue their strong domestic form.