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Du'Plessis Kirifi returns as Wellington Lions Captain


Northern United’s Du'Plessis Kirifi has been named captain of the Wellington Lions for the 2022 Bunnings Warehouse NPC; his fourth season as skipper. 

Born in Taranaki, the former Francis Douglas Memorial College student headed to Hamilton on an academy contract. Shifting to Wellington in 2017, he made his Lions debut and impressed in his debut season. 

After helping the Lions claim the 2017 Championship, he claimed the seven jersey as the Lions made the Premiership final on their return to the top flight in 2018.  

Higher honours beckoned, as the then 21-year-old signed with the Hurricanes and was made Wellington Lions Captain ahead of the 2019 season. 

Kirifi will be looking to add to his 43 appearances this season and said he was thrilled to step into a fourth season as captain. 

"I am just as excited [to be named Captain] as I was the first time. But I feel like last year I learnt a lot of tough lessons, on and off the field, which I think in that long run has hopefully made me a better leader. I just have to be an example of what I want to see in the team.” 

“I’m lucky with the Lions, in that we are a team full of leaders. Everyone has a part to play,” said Kirifi. 

Kirifi will lead the side in their pre-season hit out against Taranaki in Waverley this Saturday, before the opening game of the Bunnings Warehouse NPC against Bay of Plenty on 7 August.