Du Plessis will win his 78th cap when he starts at hooker for the Boks in the first Rugby World Cup semi-final at Twickenham (kick-off 17h00 SA time) on 24 October.
The son of farming stock from South Africa’s Free State has emerged victorious on six occasions against New Zealand and recalls waking up early in the morning to watch the Boks take on New Zealand in his home town of Bethlehem.
“When you’re young you wake up at four o’clock in the morning in a freezing cold Bethlehem to watch the Springboks play the All Blacks and ever since those days, it’s been a dream of mine to play against them,” said Du Plessis.
“This weekend I get another opportunity to play against them and that we as a team can showcase our talent against them.
“To be able to face New Zealand at this stage of the competition is a huge privilege and we have a massive task ahead of us. For us as forwards, the set pieces will be of cardinal importance and we have to lay a platform to ensure we can play in the right areas on the field.”
Du Plessis said that although there is massive pressure on the Boks to perform, the reality is that they had been fighting from a corner since the second week of the Rugby World Cup.
“We’ve been playing for our lives from the start,” said Du Plessis.
“We were in that mind-set since the match against Japan and I think we could take that with us to this weekend because we only have one chance.”
SPRINGBOK supporters wishing to share the World Cup gees with their fellow countrymen can once again enjoy the unique vibe of Absa Boktowns
Absa Boktowns, managed by the official Springbok Supporters Club,
launches this weekend in major centres and offers a home to all the Springbok supporters who want to share the Springboks’ campaign with friends and family.
Boktowns offer a unique out-of-home viewing experience where fans can gather to cheer on the men in green and gold. Supporters can look forward to meeting SA rugby legends, Bokkie the official Springbok mascot, grab great food and beverages, feel the gees, enjoy live entertainment, sponsored promotions and great giveaways.
The Springbok Supporters Club will host Absa Boktowns for all the Springbok matches during the World Cup at these venues:
· Montecasino, Johannesburg
· Gold Reef City, Johannesburg
· Silverstar Casino, Johannesburg
· Suncoast Casino, Durban
· Barnyard Willowbridge, Cape Town
· V and A Waterfront, Cape Town.
The Springbok Supporters Club will also screen the Springbok games at these venues:
· Hemingways Casino Resort, East London
· Emnotweni, Nelspruit
· Caledon Casino, Caledon
· Golden Horse, Pietermaritzburg
· Garden Route Casino, Mossel Bay
· SAAF Museum Hanger, Port Elizabeth.
For more venue information and ticket pricing visit www.absaboktown.co.za or follow the springboksclub on Facebook and Twitter @saboksupporter.
Four Rugby World Cup (RWC) winners were honoured at the RWC celebratory dinner that was held at Emperors Palace
on Wednesday, September 16.
1995 Rugby World Cup heroes, Mark Andrew and Rudolf Straeuli, 2007 RWC Springboks
Butch James and Bakkies Botha as well as former Springbok coach, Nick Mallet (1999), attended the honorary evening.
These RWC stalwarts were involved in a panel discussion about their experiences at the two Rugby World Cups and offered their insight into the chances that the current Springbok team will have at the 2015 RWC.
XEROX Golden Lions
supporters attending the game against the Cell C Sharks at Emirates Airline Park on Saturday, September 19, will be able to watch the Springboks
in their World Cup opener against Japan inside the stadium on the big screen.
A specially allocated Weber braai area will also be open to supporters.
The Golden Lions Rugby Union (GLRU) together with Weber have gone the extra mile to ensure that supporters don’t miss a minute of World Cup action while still supporting the Xerox Golden Lions. Braai packs will be sold for the braai so there is no need to bring anything to the stadium. The Weber braai area will be on the South stand inside the stadium and there will also be bar facilities in that corner of the field. It is a first for any rugby stadium to have braai facilities inside the stadium so make sure to support and join GLRU for a full day of rugby.
The band Rubberduc will perform on stage while supporters will be able to enjoy the Springbok game and the festivities on the field. Six primary school clinic teams will be in action on the field from 16:40 and a signing session on the field with the Lions players will take place from 17:15 to 17:45.
Supporters staying for the braai will be able to bring their vehicles closer to the stadium after the game as security will direct accordingly.
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