Springbok World Cup winner and former Super Rugby coach Naka Drotske was pictured Saturday making a thumbs-up sign from his hospital bed after being shot during an armed robbery.
The 47-year-old was wounded in the abdomen and arm late Thursday – at the home of his brother near Pretoria, when he charged at three intruders, two of whom were armed.
After being rushed to the hospital, Drotske was initially listed as “critical” but a hospital spokesperson confirmed to AFP Saturday that he was now “stable”.
Many on social media hailed Drotske as a “hero” for tackling the three men and pushing them out of the house.
Drotske was shot three times during the melee and suffered a severe loss of blood while being rushed to the hospital.
None of the other five people in the house, including former Springbok teammate Os du Randt, were injured.
Police said Friday they were questioning two men, but no arrests had been made.
Former hooker Drotske was an unused substitute in the 1995 World Cup Final, won by hosts South Africa against greatest rivals New Zealand in Johannesburg.
Capped 26 times by South Africa, he was the first choice four years later when they finished third in defence of the title in England.
Drotske played for and coached the Bloemfontein-based Free State Cheetahs in the domestic Currie Cup and Southern Hemisphere Super Rugby competitions.
He also spent two seasons as a player with the London Irish club.