Instead of smashing your head reading 12 different websites with 23 different releases surrounding what everyone is doing for the Rugby World Cup, we have read them and summing it all up for you right here. Excitement is definitely starting to build ahead of the global show piece.
Francois Pienaar to feature on Ticket design for Rugby World Cup
One of the five variations revealed features Rugby World Cup 1995 winning captain, Francois Pienaar. The unique design, celebrates Rugby and the rich history of the Tournament, featuring the Webb Ellis Cup at its centre, alongside three other Rugby World Cup winning captains: John Eales (Australia), Martin Johnson (England) and Richie McCaw (New Zealand) representing the nations who have been victorious at previous Rugby World Cups.
The ticket blends the striking Tournament look and feel with two Rugby images representing the heritage of the Game in England. Across the lower half the ticket is a representation of the fans, who are at the heart of the Tournament. The four designs, developed in three colours, will be issued for all matches throughout the pool phase, Quarter and Semi-Finals as well as the Bronze Final. The tickets for the eight matches that will be played at the Millennium Stadium will also feature information in Welsh. A special gold design has also been developed for the Final and features one of the host nation’s most celebrated sporting moments, Jonny Wilkinson’s dramatic drop goal at the Final of Rugby World Cup 2003.
Big Bok Support from Tsogo Sun
This was exciting news for me after dealing with Tsogo Sun in my role on the Unogwaja Challenge. Outstandingly the hotel group have jumped on board in a big way. The Rugby World Cup is around the corner and “Destiny is knocking again. When we stand together we are unstoppable…” That’s according to the #HomeGroundAdvantage SA Rugby social media campaign for the RWC. And that’s Tsogo Sun’s commitment to the Springboks as they celebrate 20 years since South Africa’s first RWC win and prepare to battle it out for the top trophy in world rugby for the third time.
For a two month period, the public will be invited to sign a good luck message to the Springboks on a ribbon, using one of the ribbon devices at Tsogo Sun properties around the country. These ribbons will then be sewn together to form a 3m x 8m flag that will be displayed on the Montecasino Piazza. A smaller replica of this flag will also be handed over at the Springbok send-off ceremony at Montecasino on 11 September.
The ‘Fly The Flag” campaign runs from 24 June to 25 August when all the signed ribbons will be collected and assembled to create the flag. For a week before the send-off ceremony, the flag will be on display at Montecasino to build further support for the Springboks.
Another exciting competition that also forms part of the Tsogo Sun RWC initiatives is campaign where a fan and five friends can win a weekend at the Palazzo Penthouse to watch the final game at Montecasino Boktown, as well as a host of great prizes from major sponsors, simply by posting the best Springbok supporters selfie.
Morne du Plessis leads celebrations for the Rugby match that changed the World
South African rugby last week celebrated the 20th anniversary of the historic 1995 Rugby World Cup win which played such a part in uniting the country and making people aware of the power of sport.
Laureus World Sports Academy Member and rugby legend Morné du Plessis, manager of the winning Springbok side, recalls: “This was the classic example of how sport can change the world. It certainly changed our country and had a lasting effect on how people could use sport to value each other and come to understand each other a little better.
“It’s a story that millions of people around the world have shared; this miracle of sport and the miracle of a great leader, Nelson Mandela, who of course became the Patron of Laureus.”
South Africa won the Rugby World Cup Final 15-12 against the All Blacks, whose captain was another Laureus Academy Member, Sean Fitzpatrick. It was the first major sporting event to take place in South Africa following the end of apartheid and it proved to be a catalyst in bringing the rainbow nation together.
Nelson Mandela, the President of South Africa, wearing a Springboks rugby shirt and cap, famously presented the Webb Ellis Cup to the South African captain François Pienaar, after the match in Ellis Park, Johannesburg.
Du Plessis adds: “It really was a marvellous time in the country. It’s spoken of, around the world, as one of the true miracle stories in sport. It largely inspired a lot of the work that Laureus does, certainly in South Africa; the fact that sport can be such a powerful initiator of social change.”
At what point did du Plessis and his Springbok team-mates think they could win? “It came slowly. When we actually arrived for the first match at Newlands [Cape Town] it was just the most incredible sense of anticipation. People were happy and were proud of their country and the players could actually feel that.
Boks named in World XV
The Boks kick off their campaign to the Rugby World Cup with a match against the World XV and it will have an all too familiar feeling about it. The inclusion of players such as Botha, Van der Merwe and Steenkamp, who appeared for the Boks against the World XV a year ago, will mean Meyer’s team will have their work cut out as their opponents are familiar with South Africa’s calls, plays and structures.
Experienced All Blacks Ali Williams and Carl Hayman will join Botha, Steenkamp, Burden and Van der Merwe in a powerful pack, that also includes 2014 European Player of the Year Steffon Armitage in the back row and England-qualified prop Petrus du Plessis.
The team will be lead by Robbie Deans and Bernard Laporte and takes place on the 11 July at Newlands.