Chester Williams is best known as the star winger of the Springbok rugby team that won the 1995 Rugby World Cup and he earned the nickname ‘The Black Pearl’ due to his phenomenal ability. An integral member of the South African rugby team from 1993 to 2000, Chester Williams played 27 international games and scored 14 tries for the Springboks during a glittering career. The first non-white player to be included in the Springboks squad since Errol Tobias in the early 1980s, Chester Williams has served as a huge role model and motivation for the non-white community of South Africa showing that anything is possible. A winger renowned for his blistering pace, Williams played for Western Province in the Currie Cup and has worked extensively as a coach following his retirement alongside his commitments as a rugby speaker.
The centrepiece and integral figure of hit Clint Eastwood film, Invictus, Chester’s face was on the side of an SAA aeroplane and several scenes showing how black children in South Africa idolised him. This was hugely relevant as the selection of non-white players was not common in South Africa before 1992 because of the country's policy of apartheid. This incredibly challenging period in South African culture is discussed by Chester Williams in what is a moving and eye-opening account during his work as a rugby speaker. Making his International debut aged 23 against Argentina in Buenos Aires, Williams scored a try on his debut in a South Africa win. His International career, hampered by knee injuries in 1996 and 1997, ended with a 23-13 win against Wales on the 26th of November 2000 in Cardiff. Despite the impact of injuries on his career, Williams was a part of the Springboks team that won the 1995 Rugby World Cup, notably scoring four tries against Western Samoa in the quarter finals. This unforgettable tournament and superb victory is fondly reminisced upon during his performances as a rugby speaker.
A glittering playing career, in total Williams played 27 games for the Springboks, scoring 14 tries and domestically his honours included a Currie Cup win in 1999 with the Golden Lions and a Tri-Nations title in 1998 alongside the World Cup glory. Turning to coaching in 2001, Williams was selected as the coach of the South African Sevens team that won bronze at the 2002 Commonwealth Games and ended runners up in the World Sevens Series and remained sevens coach until 2003. As a rugby speaker Chester Williams discusses how he used his playing experiences to inspire and educate the players of the future.
Williams was also mentioned as one of the possible successors to Springbok coach Rudolph Straeuli, a position which was eventually awarded to Jake White and in 2004 he became coach of the Cats Super 12 team, where he remained until July 2005. Appointed as the head coach of the national ‘A’ side and coaching the Pumas the team representing Mpumalanga in the Currie Cup for a year. Chester was once again one of the four named candidates to replace Jake White as Springbok coach however missed out on the role once again and now is the head coach of University of the Western Cape in Varsity Rugby where under his leadership UWC won the 2017 Varsity Shield competition.
A tremendous player and coach that has inspired South African’s across the nation to achieve and strive for more, Chester Williams also released a controversial book aptly named 'Chester' which caused quite the stir and makes for fascinating and intriguing additional content for his work as a rugby speaker. A pioneer and trailblazer in South African society, ‘The Black Pearl’, Chester Williams is available to hire as a rugby speaker for any event, dinner or function.