From golfing ambitions to a career-threatening injury, get the lowdown on the second-row

Who is Franco Mostert: Ten things you should know about the Springboks lock 

Franco Mostert has played rugby in South Africa, England and Japan – but his career hasn’t all been plain sailing.

There’s been a career-threatening injury and a contract row – find out more here.

Ten things you should know about Franco Mostert 

1. Francois John Mostert was born in Welkom, about 140km from Bloemfontein in the Free State, on 27 November 1990 and attended Brits High School.

2. At first Mostert played age-grade rugby for the Blue Bulls as a youngster and for Tuks at the University of Pretoria, but he was taken to the Lions by Johan Ackermann, in 2013.

The Lions made the Super Rugby finals in 2016 and 2017, while Ackermann would also sign Mostert for Gloucester in 2018.

3. Ackermann first noticed Mostert on South African TV when he was playing for Tuks in the Varsity Cup.

Mostert stood out not just for his play but because he was the only Tuks player wearing different coloured shorts – a Tuks tradition that means the Man of the Match in the previous game gets to wear them.

4. Mostert had ambitions to be a professional golfer but plumped for rugby on the advice of his father, Francois, who played for Free State. Mostert has been a scratch golfer.

5. In 2013, whilst at the Lions, Ackermann gave Mostert the weekend off so the player drove to the family home.

He had a car crash that left him with a broken hip and was told he would never play rugby again. However, he was later told surgery was not needed but he faced six months in traction. He managed to return for the 2014 Super Rugby season.

6. Mostert’s older brother, Jean-Pierre, played flanker for the Pumas and Falcons but had his career ended in July 2017 when he broke his neck in a car accident, outside Johannesburg, and was paralysed from the shoulders down.

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7. Franco Mostert made his international debut for South Africa in a 32-26 win over Ireland at Ellis Park in June 2016. He came off the bench for Siya Kolisi after 67 minutes.

Ruan Combrinck was the only other debutant that day for the Springboks.

8. Unsurprisingly, Mostert’s rugby hero is the 2007 Rugby World Cup-winning lock Victor Matfield, who won 127 caps for the Springboks.

“He always looked like he enjoyed what he was doing,” said Mostert.

Mostert was part of a World Cup-winning squad himself, playing in all seven of the Boks’ matches at RWC 2019, including coming off the bench in the final win over England.

9. Mostert’s time at Gloucester started under a cloud with the Lions withholding his registration as they contested his signing for the Gallagher Premiership club.

The Lions had claimed it was a transgression of the player movement regulations, World Rugby got involved and the lock was given the all clear to play.

10. Mostert joined Honda Heat in the Japanese Top League in 2020.

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