Lions captain Warren Whiteley has revealed that he was the victim of an attempted hijacking earlier in the season ahead of Saturday’s Super Rugby Final.
The incident occured the day before the Lions last faced the Hurricanes, when they went on to suffer a huge 50-17 defeat at Ellis Park back in April.
Whiteley told Supersport: “They didn’t take my car, but they took my wallet and phone. They never wanted my kitbag full of kit, they threw that back into the car.
“I really haven’t thought of it that much, my bigger focus has been on getting ready for this game. I have tried not to look back into the past.
“All I’ve been concentrating on is giving myself a chance to play this weekend. I’m of course very happy to be back and thanks to the hard work of the medical staff look forward to contribute. I’m very grateful for this chance.”
Whiteley’s has been passed fit just in time for Saturday’s final, having suffered a calf strain in the quarter-final, and he also opted not to be considered for selection for the Olympics in Rio despite being involved with South African Sevens during the 2014 Commonwealth Games, a decision he admits was tough to make.
He added: “It was the most difficult decision of my career. There was never any guarantee to go to the Olympics and make the side. I knew I had to work my way into the side but I really wanted to stay here and contribute.
“It was a goal of ours to win Super Rugby and I followed my heart. Coach Ackies helped me a lot in the decision to play this weekend.”