Chiliboy to make the most of Bok return
IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Very few people would have expected Mahlatse 'Chiliboy' Ralepelle to make a return to the Springbok team after he received a two-year ban from the game.
In 2014 while he was in France with club side Toulouse, Ralepelle tested positive for an anabolic steroids and he was subsequently banned from rugby until 2016.
Despite his future looking bleak, Ralepelle, who last played for the Boks in 2013, made a return to the rugby field when the Sharks offered him a contract last year and the hooker has never looked back.
He is now on the Boks' bench for Saturday's Rugby Championship Test against the Wallabies in Bloemfontein and he will be working hard to become a regular in head coach Allister Coetzee's squad.
"There are lots of things that I wish I could control and one of the things I said to myself is that I got to control the controllables," said Ralepelle.
He added: "All I can do is just train and work hard and play hard and hopefully I get seen again and play well and get chosen."
During his ban, Ralepelle always knew that he would make a comeback to the rugby field.
"Rugby has always been a part of me, it has always been my passion, so deep down in my heart I will always knew that I still had a lot to offer.
"I didn't want to walk away from the game thinking only 'if I could have given extra, I could have been there'.
"But I now got the opportunity, so I just got to do the best I can for the team," he said.
By Warren Fortune