Let's all unite behind our rugby boys

Despite continuing challenges, not unique to SA, we have come a long way since 1995, the writer says.
Despite continuing challenges, not unique to SA, we have come a long way since 1995, the writer says.
Image: Odd ANDERSEN / AFP

The world still remembers how Nelson Mandela embraced a previously exclusive white sport as a bridge between two broad sections of a deeply divided nation during the 1995 Rugby World Cup.

The process of nation building is continuing to this day as is the healing of the scars of the past.

As a nation, we must embrace events like this, as we also did with the Fifa World Cup in 2010, to reach out to each other and to unite behind our players who are defending our honour.

Despite continuing challenges, not unique to SA, we have come a long way since 1995. At the time Chester Williams was a lone swallow, symbolising the arrival of a new season.

We now have a captain from the previously disadvantaged section of our nation and a fully representative team confirming a new season. We play under a new flag embraced by all South Africans and we proudly unite behind our unique and inclusive national anthem.

Yes, we still face challenges as a nation, but looking at the growing division, hatred and intolerance around the globe, also in established democracies previously regarded as world leaders and champions of basic human rights and tolerance, SA is still an example to the world given where we come from.

I am proudly South African and fully behind our team in Japan. Viva the Bokke!

Dawie Jacobs, Sterrewag

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