jesse kriel, manie libbok, lukhanyo am, springboks

Jesse Kriel and Lukhanyo Am.
Images via Instagram:

‘Didnt say this about Libbok’: Kriel praised amid Lukhanyo Am’s return

Unlike Manie Libbok, Springbok fans on social media claim Jesse Kriel was exempt from criticism and comparisons to Lukhanyo Am.

jesse kriel, manie libbok, lukhanyo am, springboks

Jesse Kriel and Lukhanyo Am.
Images via Instagram:

Social media users are scoffing at player Jesse Kriel not receiving the same criticism as fellow Springbok Manie Libbok following the call-up of Lukhanyo Am on Monday, 2 October.

This follows the return of Handre Pollard last week, who was unfairly pitted against  Libbok on social media.


On Wednesday, 4 October, Lukhanyo Am made his first appearance at training in Toulon, France.

The 29-year-old – who helped SA win the 2019 Rugby World Cup – was called up following the announcement of Makazole Mapimpi’s injury earlier this week.

ALSO READ: The fascinating reason Lukhanyo Am is missing half a finger

Like Lukhanyo, Jesse Kriel is the only other outside specialist centre in the squad. But unlike Manie Libbok, who was pitted against recalled Hanre Pollard on social media, rugby fans are claiming that Kriel did not endure the same treatment.

On Twitter or X, rugby commentator Jared Wright tweeted: “Good to see Jesse Kriel getting some love from the fans despite Lukhanyo Am’s return.  Seen a few comments rightly praising his performances in his absence”.

ALSO READ: Sorry, Eben! Does Siya Kolisi have a new bestie?

However, tweeps have hit back at Wright’s comments, claiming Manie Libbok was not afforded the same reception about Handre Pollard’s return.

ALSO READ: Time to shine: Lukhanyo Am replaces Bok bestie Mapimpi

@AgneKwena: “Same love Libbok didn’t get. Terrible”

@ZacMoselane: “You didn’t say this about Libbok. But I am not surprised.”

@AgneKwena: “Few fans supported Libbok; others went as far as saying he’s the reason we lost to Ireland, despite that he assisted our only try”..


Meanwhile, Lukhanyo Am has been feeling the love from his fellow Springboks.

The Zwelitsha-born star received a warm welcome from his teammates, including from captain Siya Kolisi. A social media post announcing his return was also liked by players like Cheslin Kolbe, Handre Pollard, and Damian Willemse.

According to The Citizen, Grant Williams said of Lukhanyo in a press conference: “He’s a good leader. Everyone enjoys him in the Springboks and Sharks environment.”

siya kolisi, lukhanyo am, even etzebeth
Siya Kolisi welcomed Lukhanyo with open arms during the Springboks training session. Images via Twitter: @springboks