Friday 18 October 2019

South African World Cup winner James Small dies from suspected heart attack aged 50

New Zealand winger Jonah Lomu attempts to push off his South African opponent James Small (L) during the Rugby World Cup final played at Ellis Park June 24, 1995. South Africa won 15-12 in extra time/File Photo
New Zealand winger Jonah Lomu attempts to push off his South African opponent James Small (L) during the Rugby World Cup final played at Ellis Park June 24, 1995. South Africa won 15-12 in extra time/File Photo
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Former Springbok James Small has passed away suddenly aged 50 after suffering a suspected heart attack..

The 47-times capped winger was a member of the 1995 World Cup-winning side and previously held the record as South Africa’s leading try-scorer with 20 between 1992 and 1997. At club level, Small played for the Lions, Sharks and Western Province during his career.

In a statement issued by South Africa Rugby on Wednesday, the organisation's president Mark Alexander said: “James, as a member of the triumphant Rugby World Cup squad from 1995, will always have a special place in the hearts and minds of the South African public and we were devastated to hear of his passing.

“He always played with the type of passion and courage that encapsulate what Springbok rugby stands for, and he lived his life in the same way.

“At 50 years old, James Small died too young. Our thoughts and condolences are with his family and friends during this very sad time.”

Small is the third member of the 1995 squad to pass away, after Ruben Kruger and Joost van der Westhuizen in 2010 and 2017 respectively.

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