Sports

Famous Athletes from South Africa

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List of famous athletes from South Africa, listed alphabetically with photos when available. South Africa has seen some very talented athletes over the years, many of who have gone on to represent their country in the Olympics. These are some of the best South African athletes of all time, so if you're a native of South Africa and are aspiring to compete in sports professionally then these are people you should look up to. If you're searching for a particular popular athlete from South Africa then you can use the "search" box to find who you're looking for.

The list you're viewing is made up of a variety of different athletes, including Louis Tancred and Jeff Coetzee.

This list answers the questions, "Who are the greatest South African athletes?" and "Which athletes are from South Africa?"

You can click on the names of these legendary athletes of South Africa in order to get more information about each one.
1
Bismarck du Plessis is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Bismarck Wilhelm du Plessis is a South African rugby union player, who plays for South Africa internationally, the Natal Sharks in the domestic Currie Cup, and the Sharks in Super Rugby.
2
Jacques Kallis is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Jacques Henry Kallis is a former South African cricketer. A right-handed batsman and right-arm fast-medium swing bowler, Kallis is regarded as one of the greatest of the game's all-rounders. As ...more
3
Allan Donald is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Allan Anthony Donald is a former South African cricketer and one of their most successful pace bowlers. In his prime, he was one of the best fast bowlers ever seen in Test cricket, reaching the ...more
4
François Steyn is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
François Philippus Lodewyk Steyn is a South African rugby union player, who plays for Toshiba Brave Lupus in the Japanese Top League. He usually plays at fullback or first centre.
5
Oscar Pistorius is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Oscar Leonard Carl Pistorius OIB is a South African sprint runner and convicted killer. Although both of Pistorius' legs were amputated below the knee when he was 11 months old, he has competed ...more
6
Shaun Pollock is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Shaun Maclean Pollock is a South African retired cricketer who is considered a bowling all-rounder. From 2000 to 2003 he was the captain of the South African cricket team, and also played for ...more
7
Ernie Els is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Theodore Ernest "Ernie" Els is a South African professional golfer. A former World No. 1, he is known as "The Big Easy" due to his imposing physical stature along with his ...more
8
Kevin Pietersen is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Kevin Peter Pietersen, MBE is a South African-born English cricketer. He is a right-handed batsman and occasional off spin bowler who formerly played for England and currently plays for Surrey ...more
9
Dale Steyn is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Dale Willem Steyn is a South African cricketer who plays in Tests, T20 Internationals and One Day International cricket for South Africa. Steyn plays domestic cricket in South Africa for Cape ...more
10
Hashim Amla is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Hashim Mohammad Amla is a South African cricketer. A right-handed top order batsman and occasional medium-pace bowler, Amla bats at number 3 for South Africa in Test matches and number 1 for ...more
11
Hansie Cronje is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Wessel Johannes "Hansie" Cronje was a South African cricketer and captain of the South African national cricket team in the 1990s. He died in a plane crash in 2002. He was voted the ...more
12
Cameron van der Burgh is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Cameron van der Burgh is a South African swimmer. He is Africa's first home-trained world record holder and individual male Olympic Champion He trains with Dirk Lange and is based in Pretoria. ...more
13
Graeme Pollock is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Robert Graeme Pollock is a former cricketer for South Africa, Transvaal and Eastern Province. A member of a famous cricketing family, Pollock is widely regarded as South Africa's greatest ...more
14
Danie Gerber is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Danie Gerber is a former South African rugby union player, who played for South Africa between 1980 and 1992. Playing mainly at centre, he won only 24 caps for South Africa despite playing ...more
15
Bobby Locke is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Arthur D'Arcy "Bobby" Locke was the first internationally successful South African professional golfer. He won four Open Championships, nine South African Opens, seven South African ...more
16
Butch James is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Andrew David "Butch" James is a former South African rugby union player who represented South Africa 40 times and was a member of the team that won the 2007 Rugby World Cup. James's ...more
17
David Pocock is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
David Pocock is an Australian rugby union player. He is a Brumbies openside flanker, and is vice captain of the Brumbies.
18
AB de Villiers is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Abraham Benjamin "AB" de Villiers is a South African cricketer, who captains the South African One Day International team, having succeeded Graeme Smith after the 2011 Cricket World ...more
19
Graeme Smith is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Graeme Craig Smith is a South African cricketer and former captain of the South African cricket team Test side, having succeeded Shaun Pollock after the 2003 Cricket World Cup. He was succeeded ...more
20
Herschelle Gibbs is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Herschelle Herman Gibbs is a South African cricketer, more specifically known as a batsman. Gibbs was schooled at St Joseph's Marist College and then Diocesan College in Rondebosch. Gibbs was a ...more
21
Mark Boucher is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Mark Verdon Boucher is a former South African cricketer, who holds the record for the most Test dismissals by a wicket-keeper. He has represented Border, South Africa, Africa XI, ICC World XI ...more
22
David Miller is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
David Andrew Miller is a South African cricketer. He is a left-handed batsman and a right-arm off spin bowler who plays domestic cricket for Dolphins and has represented South Africa in both One ...more
23
Jonathan Trott is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Ian Jonathan Leonard Trott is a South African-born English Test cricketer. Domestically, he plays for Warwickshire, and he has also played in South Africa and New Zealand. He was ICC and ECB ...more
24
Jonty Rhodes is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Jonathan Neil "Jonty" Rhodes is a former South African Test and One Day International cricketer who played for the South African cricket team between 1992 and 2003. Rhodes was born in ...more
25
Gary Player is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list Famous Athletes from South Africa
Gary Player DMS; OIG is a South African professional golfer, widely regarded as one of the greatest players in the history of golf. Over his career, Player accumulated nine major championships ...more