Aphelele Onke Okuhle Fassi, born on 23 January 1998 in King William's Town, South Africa, is a talented South African rugby union player who primarily plays as a wing or fullback. Standing at 1.89 meters tall and weighing 87 kilograms, he possesses the physical attributes and skills that make him a formidable player on the field.
Fassi earned the nickname 'The Weekend Special' due to sharing the surname of the renowned South African singer-songwriter Brenda Fassie, who sang the hit song. He began his rugby journey at Dale College Boys' High School, where he spent three years as part of the First XV, honing his skills and making his mark on the school rugby scene.
His exceptional performances at the Kearsney Easter Festival in 2018 caught the attention of the Sharks Academy, and Fassi was awarded a bursary to join the academy. During his time at Dale College, he scored an impressive 15 tries in 23 games, showcasing his try-scoring ability and his potential as a rising star in South African rugby.
Although Fassi also had talent in cricket, he decided to focus on pursuing a career in rugby, and the Sharks have reaped the benefits of his electrifying running from the back. In 2018, he made his breakthrough with the Sharks during the SuperSport Rugby Challenge, displaying his versatility by playing at flyhalf and inside center positions.
Fassi made his Super Rugby debut for the Sharks at fullback against the Sunwolves in February 2019. With his deceptive speed and agility, he quickly established himself as a key member of the Sharks' squad, earning a place in the team for the 2020 Super Rugby season after making 15 appearances in 2019.
His exceptional performances for the Sharks did not go unnoticed, and Fassi received a well-deserved call-up to the Springboks squad. He made his test debut in the opening game of 2021 against Georgia, starting on the left wing and making an immediate impact by scoring a try with his first touch of the ball. His explosive running, speed, and agility have made him a thrilling player to watch, and his international career is filled with promise.
Aphelele Fassi's rise in South African rugby has been nothing short of impressive, and as he continues to excel for the Sharks and the national team, his electric performances will undoubtedly leave a lasting impression on the sport.
|2018 - present
|2019 - present
|South Africa A
|2021 - present
|2021 - 2022