This week we caught up with South African Rugby Players, Kurt-Lee Arendse and Sidney Tobias at Loftus Versfeld Stadium, the home ground of Blue Bulls Rugby in Pretoria.

Kurt-Lee Arendse’s rugby journey began when he was just 8 years-old and played his first game for his primary school. He continued to play rugby throughout his schooling career and while at Paulus Joubert Secondary School, he was selected for the Boland Cavaliers’ sevens team.

While playing for the University of the Western Cape’s Varsity Cup team, Kurt-Lee joined the South African Rugby Sevens Academy in 2018, launching his national career.

In 2019, he made the Blitzbok squad and made his debut in the Vancouver Sevens 21-12 Cup semi-final victory. The following year, he joined the Blue Bulls, where he met fellow teammate and now friend, Sidney Tobias.

For Sidney, one could say that rugby flows through his veins. His love for rugby started at a young age as his father, Errol Tobias, was the first person of color to play for the Springboks.

As he got older, he was able to understand the ins and outs of rugby, and the love he had for the game grew. Since then, rugby has taken Sidney across the globe, having played for international teams in England and Italy, before coming back to home soil to play for the Bulls.

“Last year when I got invited [to the Blue Bulls] it was actually then when my relationship started with Kurt-Lee, he was one of the first to open up to me and from there, our relationship grew.”

We joined the men for a gym training session before they headed off to SkinPHD in Queenswood for a reflexology treatment and massage. As high-performance athletes, it is important for Kurt-Lee and Sidney to relax their muscles.

“I think the importance of downtime can’t be underestimated because at the end of the day all we have is our bodies, we use it as a tool,” says Sidney. After a fun training session and relaxing treatment, one does build up a bit of an appetite and that is why they decided to stop off at Nush Cafe for something to eat.

Founded in 2020, the word “Nush” means “almond” in Aramaic. The cafe’s selection comes from a variety of nations across the Mediterranean, Middle East, Europe and Africa together, with an emphasis on some delightful traditional South African dishes.

“We started this cafe because we wanted a place where people could feel at home and be welcomed. Nush is really a cafe for people to really come and enjoy,” explains Wayne Vermeulen, owner of Nush Cafe

The teammates, however, decided to take the match off the field and into the cafe with a fun coffee making competition – comment on our social media pages who you think was the winner. While the duo sat down for some grub, we found out a bit more about Sidney’s life. 

“I’ve been blessed to be married for seven years now, I’ve got a four-year-old daughter that absolutely loves rugby and most of all, Uncle Kurt-Lee,” says Sidney, “having a family is such a blessing and it gives you a purpose in life.”

The next stop for the gents was Blom Flower Boutique where they learned how to make a bouquet. Ending off this lovely day, we asked Kurt-Lee and Sidney what the horizon is looking like for them. 

“For the rest of my career, I would just like to enjoy the game as much as possible and try to give back a little bit more to the younger generation coming through,” explains Sidney.

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