Cheslin Kolbe has admitted that he is more nervous about Saturday’s Heineken Champions Cup final than he was for the Rugby World Cup final.
Toulouse winger Cheslin Kolbe is no stranger to big games, having beaten England in the 2019 Rugby World Cup final with the Springboks. However, the South African flyer is more than a little nervous about the Champions Cup final with La Rochelle.
Kolbe, who has been one of Toulouse’s star players since joining the French club in 2017, wasn’t afraid to admit to being nervous to Sky Sports about Saturday’s encounter with La Rochelle.
— Heineken Champions Cup (@ChampionsCup) May 19, 2021
Champions Cup final clash between Toulouse and La Rochelle.
“I spoke to my wife last night, and I said for some unknown reason the final this weekend feels much more nerve-wracking than the final I played at the World Cup,” Kolbe said.
“I am not too sure what the reason is for that. The nerves and butterflies are already starting to show, but I think that is a good sign as well.
“I think it’s probably [due to] the long wait, Toulouse not getting the fifth title, and I think there is a bit of, not pressure, but expectations, from the public, from the club.”
British and Irish Lions series against the Springboks.
Saturday’s Champions Cup final isn’t the only major rugby event Kolbe will be involved in this year, as the Springboks winger will, if he remains uninjured, play in this year’s test series with the British and Irish Lions.
Again, Kolbe has already enjoyed a healthy amount of major achievements during his time in rugby, but the Springboks flyer revealed that taking part in a Lions series would rank among the best moments in his career.
“There is a lot of excitement for me, to be honest, playing in a final, having only been here for four years at Toulouse, and then hopefully being part of the Lions tour that is coming to South Africa,” Kolbe commented.
“It would definitely be a highlight in my career and something that I would definitely love to be a part of. But first things first, we’ve got a final this weekend, and that’s where my all my energy and focus is vested into.”
Saturday’s Champions Cup final between Toulouse and La Rochelle kicks off at 4.45 pm this Saturday and will be shown free-to-air on Virgin Media in Ireland and on Channel 4 in the UK.