Namibia at the Rugby World Cup 2015
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The Namibian National Team - 17 July 2015
Namibia in the Rugby World Cup
Saracens loose-forward Jacques Burger will captain Namibia in the upcoming Rugby World Cup in England and will lead a squad where 14 of the 31 players selected have previous Rugby World Cup experience.
The squad was named in Windhoek on Thursday following a four day training camp held in Durban, South Africa.
Burger is amongst four members of the squad that will be appearing in their third Rugby World Cup, with prop Johnnie Redelinghuys, loose-forward Tinus du Plessis and scrum-half Eugene Jantjies also part of the Namibian teams that participated in France 2007 and New Zealand 2011.
Redelinghuys is Namibia highest capped player of all time with 46 test matches to his credit.
Nine players, Raoul Larson, Rohan Kitshoff, PJ van Lill, Theuns Kotzè, Darryl de La Harpe, Danie van Wyk, Conrad Marais, David Philander and Chrysander Botha also did duty in New Zealand in 2011.
Another feature of the squad is the inclusion of three players under the age of 21 in hooker Louis van der Westhuizen, flank Wian Conradie and scrum-half Damian Stevens.
The squad has an average of almost twenty test matches per player and an average age of just over 26.
Namibia’s Head Coach Phil Davies says the squad has a good combination of good experienced players mixed with youthful exuberance.
“There’s a lot of things you have to consider when making a selection like this, the dynamics of the group is very important and I think we have a number of young, but inexperienced players whose exuberance is rubbing off on the more experienced players. I think it is the strongest group of players who we could have picked to select Namibia at the Rugby World Cup. There’s some good versatility and a big number of players are in good form as we showed recently when we won four test matches and moved up to number 20 on the world rankings.”
Davies admitted that it was very difficult to make the final selection as Namibia had developed depth in some positions over the last couple of months.
“It was tough, we have good depth in the midfield, lots of talent in the back three, and also in our back-row. We do have some world class players in Jacques Burger and Renaldo Bothma amongst others, but in some areas where we lack a bit of depth. We are looking at developing some young players for the future in those positions,” said Davies.
Namibia face defending Rugby World Cup champions New Zealand on September 24th, followed by pool C matches against Georgia, Tonga and Argentina, all teams ranked in the top 15 and above Namibia in 20th spot on World Rugby’s latest rankings.
“I feel the players that have put their hand up have been rewarded with selection. There’s a lot of courage and character and we will be doing everything to get that first ever elusive win at a Rugby World Cup. I am pleased with the dynamics of the players who are based in Namibia and those who play professionally. We couldn’t ask for a group that is more together, a more committed group” said Davies.
Namibia Rugby’s General Manager: Rugby, John Williams, said he was hugely excited by the inclusion of Conradie, Stevens and van der Westhuizen, three players who did duty for Namibia at the Junior World Trophy in the last two years.
“What is important is that they were selected on merit and that is very good in terms of our future and for our legacy program, it is very exciting to see these young players as it shows our structures are working and that bodes well for our future.”
The Namibian team returned to Windhoek on Thursday after a hugely successful training camp in Durban that included three joint training sessions with the Springboks.
With just 27 days to go until kick-off, Rugby World Cup 2015 has already achieved the best-ever pre-sales of tickets for a Rugby World Cup (2.2 million) and will shortly surpass the final total number of 2.25 million tickets sold for France 2007.
The Namibian Rugby World Cup Squad is: (Number of caps and clubs in brackets)
Props: Johannes Coetzee (4 - Brive, France), AJ de Klerk (5 - University of Stellenbosch, South Africa) Jaco Engels (12 - United, Namibia), Raoul Larson (6 - SWD Eagles, South Africa), Johnnie Redelinghuys (46 - Wanderers, Namibia), Casper Viviers (12 - Saint Nazaire, France).
Hookers: Louis van der Westhuizen (2 - Leopards, South Africa), Torsten van Jaarsveld (7 - Free State Cheetahs, South Africa)
Locks: Janco Venter (8 - University of Stellenbosch, South Africa), Tjiuee Uanivi (10 - Brive, France)
Loose-Forwards: Renaldo Bothma (7 - Sharks & Pumas, South Africa), Jacques Burger (33 - Saracens, England), Wian Conradie (1 - University of Johannesburg, South Africa), Leneve Damens (3 - Wanderers, Namibia), Tinus du Plessis (43 - Wanderers, Namibia), Rohan Kitshoff (22 - Durbell, South Africa), PJ van Lill (38 - Dax, France)
Scrum-halves: Eneill Buitendag (13 - Wanderers, Namibia), Eugene Jantjies (43 - Farul Constanta, Romania), Damien Stevens (1 - University of Western Cape, South Africa)
Flyhalf: Theuns Kotzè (25 - Bourg-en-Bresse, France)
Centres: Darryl de La Harpe (27 - Western Suburbs, Namibia), Johan Deysel (8 - Leopards, South Africa), JC Greyling (7 - United, Namibia), Danie van Wyk (13 - United, Namibia)
Wings: Conrad Marais (7 - Beziers, France), David Philander (24 - Spotswood United, New Zealand), Heinrich Smith (10 - Leopards, South Africa), Russell van Wyk (4 - Western Suburbs, Namibia)
Fullbacks: Chrysander Botha (33 - Exeter Chiefs, England) & Johan Tromp (18 - Wanderers, Namibia)
Friday, 21 August 2015
The Springboks and fellow African team Namibia will train together next week as both teams go into the final phase of their Rugby World Cup preparations.
The Namibians, who have been in impressive form recently, will hold a RWC camp in Durban and the teams decided it would benefit both to hold joint training sessions from Monday to Wednesday.
Apart from the on-field training, there will also be meetings between the coaches and other management of the two teams.
“It will be great preparation for us to train with a team that is also going to the World Cup,” said Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer.
“Namibia have done well recently, successfully defending their African Cup title and showing a massive improvement from last year.
“I’m excited to be working with them – they have a core of experienced players and management we know well and I’m sure we’ll be able to tap into each other’s expertise as we get ready for the World Cup.”
The Namibians are in a Rugby World Cup pool with New Zealand, Argentina, Georgia and Tonga, while the Springboks are pooled with Japan, Samoa, Scotland and the USA.
Phil Davies, the coach of Namibia, said the training camp was an important part of Namibia’s Rugby World Cup campaign. They will travel to Durban with 36 players, 15 of whom played at the tournament in 2011 while four players, captain Jacques Burger, prop Johnnie Redelinghuys, loose-forward Tinus du Plessis and scrum-half Eugene Jantjies, featured for Namibia at the 2007 Rugby World Cup in France.
“The training camp in Durban is vital for our preparations as it will expose our players to Tier One opposition,” said Davies.
“The focus will be on delivering our systems efficiently under pressure and we are hoping for confirmation that our structures in attack and defence work against a world-class team. It is a great opportunity for us to replicate a World Cup week.”
The 31-man Springbok squad for the Rugby World Cup will be named in Durban on Friday evening and the squad will depart for England on 11 September.
Issued by SARU Corporate Affairs
Namibia’s national training squad will travel to South Africa on Sunday for a 4-day training camp in Durban. The visit will include a number of joint practise sessions with the Springboks following an approach from the NRU to SARU for assistance with Namibia’s Rugby World Cup preparations. According to Namibia’s Head Coach Phil Davies the training camp is an important part of Namibia’s Rugby World Cup campaign.
” The training camp in Durban is vital for our preparations as it will expose our players to Tier One opposition, “ said Davies.
The squad of 36 players is expected to arrive in Durban late Sunday afternoon and will kick-off the training camp Monday morning. Three joint sessions have been planned with the Springbok training squad which will be based on attacking and defence structures.
“ The focus will be on delivering our systems efficiently under pressure and we are hoping for confirmation that our structures in attack and defence work against a world class team ," said Davies.
This will be the first time that the squad of 36 will be together outside Windhoek and for Davies and his management an ideal opportunity for a Rugby World Cup dry run ahead of their departure for England next month.
“ It is a great opportunity for us to replicate a World Cup week,” said Davies.
On Wednesday Davies trimmed his original squad of 51 down to 36 players and next week a further five players will be cut before the Namibian squad for Rugby World Cup 2015 is confirmed.
“ The training camp in Durban is crucial for all the lads to set up their performance and will be the key to making the final selections, “ said Davies.
NRU President Bradley Basson has meanwhile urged the squad to make full use of the opportunity to practise with the Springboks.
“ It is your last chance to make the World Cup squad, it is not going to be an easy 4 days but if you show the same commitment that you did during our last four test matches at home, then it will be a very successful exercise and you will make Namibia proud, “ said Basson.
The squad of 36 players for the training camp in Durban includes no fewer than 15 players with Rugby World Cup experience while four players, captain Jacques Burger, prop Johnnie Redelinghuys, loose-forward Tinus du Plessis and scrum-half Eugene Jantjies also featured for Namibia at the 2007 Rugby World Cup in France.
Attached a list of the 36 players with statistics for the training camp in Durban.
The NRU will issue Namibia’s Media Schedule for the training camp in Durban on Friday 20 August.
The squad for Durban is : Zana Botha, Chrysander Botha, Renaldo Bothma, Arthur Bouwer, Eneill Buitendag, Jacques Burger, Johannes Coetzee, Wian Conradie, Leneve Damens, Danie Dames, AJ de Klerk, Darryl de la Harpe, Johan Deysel, Tinus du Plessis, Jaco Engels, Thomasau Forbes, JC Greyling, Eugene Jantjies, Rohan Kitshoff, Theuns Kotzè, Raoul Larson, Conrad Marais, David Philander, Johnnie Redelinghuys, Heinrich Smit, Damian Stevens, Johan Tromp, Tjiuee Uanivi, Louis van der Westhuizen, Torsten van Jaarsveld, PJ van Lill, Danie van Wyk, Russel van Wyk, Janco Venter, Casper Viviers & DG Wiese.
Namibia will travel to next month’s Rugby World Cup in England as champions of Africa. On Saturday, in front of close to 5000 people at the Hage Geingob Stadium in Windhoek, the hosts, sponsored by Windhoek Draught, thrashed Zimbabwe by 80 points to 6 in the final of the Africa Cup competition to retain the title they won in Madagascar last year. Inspired by the presence of Namibia’s president and Patron of the Namibia Rugby Union, Dr. Hage Geingob, the hosts recorded 12 tries, 10 of which were converted to the two penalties from Zimbabwe. Rohan Kitshoff led Namibia superbly in the absence of Jacques Burger and scored a hat-trick of tries to earn the Windhoek Draught Man of the Match Award.
The result was a far cry from the close 24-20 win by Namibia 14 months ago in Antananarivo at the Rugby World Cup Qualification Tournament. The one sided affair highlighted the benefits Namibia have reaped from having had all their players and coaching staff in camp for the last couple of weeks in their build-up to the Rugby World Cup, now just over a month to go. Namibia’s superior fitness, the result of two full time Strength and Conditioning coaches working with the players, also played a huge role in the hosts dominance over Zimbabwe as well as the week before when they hammered Kenya 46-13.
After a cautious start by both sides it was Zimbabwe’s flyhalf Tichafara Makwanya who opened the scoring with penalty in the 14 th minute, the last time Zimbabwe had any say in the match as they never threatened the well organised and vastly improved Namibian defence. Former Western Province loose-forward Kitshoff got Namibia’s account going in the 20 th minute with the first of his hat trick of tries from a rolling maul after Namibia had won a line-out close to the Zimbabwean line. Makwanya slotted a second penalty before Renaldo Bothma crashed over for Namibia’s second try. In his first start for Namibia this year, the Pumas and Sharks no. 8 proved to be handful for the visitors and his powerful runs kept the hosts on the front-foot all afternoon. The third try scored by centre JC Greyling was set up after another effective driving maul from the ever improving Namibian pack of forwards. Kitshoff’s second try, after the half-time siren had gone, came from a strong powerful scrum five meters out. Flyhalf Theuns Kotzè, who produced another outstanding performance, converted all the first half tries for a commanding 28-6 lead at the break.
The second half was one way traffic and the scoreboard operators struggled to keep up, Namibia added another eight tries as the hosts went on to record their biggest ever win over Zimbabwe in the 27 meetings between the two countries since 1992. Five minutes after the restart centre Johan Deysel added his name to the scoresheet when Kotzè sliced through the defence and sent the Leopards player away for try number 5. Kotzè also had a hand in the next try when a clever and well judged kick found winger Russell van Wyk who scored his 4 test try for Namibia. Namibia’s rolling maul proved to be unstoppable on the day, replacement prop Johnnie Redelinghuys went over for try number 7 from a line-out close to Zimbabwe’s line. Another replacement PJ van Lill scored try number 8 from a strong scrum before Kitshoff completed his hat-trick in the 70 th minute, again the result of the driving maul. Van Wyk got his second of the afternoon, loose-forward Tinus du Plessis was rewarded for an excellent performance with a try before prop Redelinghuys also scored his second try of the match to cap a memorable performance for Namibia.
The match was Namibia’s last before they travel to London next month. Namibian captain Rohan Kitshoff was satisfied with the performance but said the team still had some work to do. “ We are about at 80 percent of where we would want to be, the four test matches against Russia, Kenya and Zimbabwe have helped a great deal with our preparations but we know that we still have a great deal of work to put in before we leave for the Rugby World Cup.”
According to Head Coach Phil Davies, this was Namibia’s best performance since returning from the Nations Cup last month. “ I think of all the games we played this was the most accomplished performance we have produced so far especially in terms of working through our processes. We lacked a bit of patience in the first half but rectified that at half-time and to come out and score 42 points in the second half was really pleasing.”
Davies added that Namibia had made a lot of progress since their match against Zimbabwe in June last year. “ It is important that we progress now, it is important that we progress at the World Cup but it is even more important that we progress after the World Cup and keep the momentum going. It is a real opportunity for Namibia to establish itself as a top rugby playing nation in the next 4 to 5 years, we are now in the top 20 and we need to keep on pushing and building,” said Davies.
Namibia will continue with their preparations at home before traveling to South Africa at the end of a month for a 4-day training camp in Durban.
Namibia - Tries: Kitshoff(3), van Wyk(2), Redelinghuys(2), Bothma, du Plessis, Greyling, Deysel & PJ van Lill.
Conversions : Kotzè (10)
Zimbabwe - Penalties: Makwanya (2)
Namibia recorded an emphatic 46-13 win over Kenya in a Windhoek Draught Africa Cup match at the Hage Geingob Stadium in Windhoek on Saturday. Namibia led 25-6 at the break. Their 6 try win over the East African side came just over a year after Namibia lost to Kenya at the World Cup qualification tournament in Madagascar, a defeat that came very close to destroying Namibia’s Rugby World Cup ambitions. On Saturday the Kenyans found a very different Namibian side to the one they had beaten last year, and the final score-line was very kind to the visitors. Despite their recent victories over Spain and Portugal respectively, the Kenyans were no match for the Namibians who six weeks out from the Rugby World Cup, looked to be the better conditioned and tactically astute side.
Hampton Court palace & Chase Bridge Primary to welcome Namibia to RWC
Landmark venues across England and Wales chosen to host Rugby World Cup 2015 Team Welcome Ceremonies
With excitement building ahead of Rugby World Cup 2015, seventeen landmark venues across England and Wales will play host to Team Welcome Ceremonies as the world’s best teams are officially welcomed to the Tournament.
The ceremonies will be a celebration of the Team’s achievements and will include Team friends and family as well as the local community. The ceremonies will be an official welcome to England and Wales for the Team featuring their presentation of Tournament Caps and Rugby World Cup 2015 Participation Medals.
Highlights: Windhoek Draught 2 nd Test / Nam v Russia
Namibia defeated Russia by 45-5 in the second test of the Windhoek Draught Friendship Series on Saturday 18 July. The test match was attended by the President of Namibia and Patron of the Namibian Rugby Union, Dr.Hage Geingob.
Namibian defeated Russia by 39 points to 19 in Windhoek on July 11 in the first test of the Windhoek Draught test series. The hosts produced their best performance in over a year with a comprehensive victory over a side ranked 3 places higher at number 22 on World Rugby’s rankings.Coming off three consecutive losses at the Nations Cup in Romania last month, Namibia superbly led by Saracen’s loose-forward Jacques Burger, put their 2015 Rugby World Cup campaign firmly back on track.
Stevens and Conradie to debut against Kenya
Former Namibian under 20 players, scrumhalf Damien Stevens and loose-forward Wian Conradie will make their senior debuts against Kenya on Saturday in the Windhoek Draught Africa Cup 1A international series. Conradie who did duty for Namibia at the IRB Junior Trophy Tournament in Hong Kong last year and Stevens who represented Namibia at the Junior World Trophy in Portugal this year, are the only new caps in the match day 22 named by Head Coach Phil Davies on Wednesday.
The Namibian Rugby Union in conjunction with South African Sports promoter Willem Strauss and SAFLAND announced on Tuesday that an international 7s tournament will be hosted in Windhoek on 25/26 September. Eight teams will participate in the International Competition including the SARU Sevens Academy, Zimbabwe, Poland and off course the hosts Namibia. In addition a schools and club competition will also take place. The tournament will serve as preparations for the Africa Men's Sevens Olympic Qualification Tournanament in South Africa from the 13 th of November. At the Media briefing in Windhoek today, NRU CEO Sybrand de Beer, Willem Strauss and Kallie van der Merwe from SAFLAND.
Namibia defeated Russia by 45 points to 5 in Windhoek on Saturday to clinch the Windhoek Draught Friendship Series 2-nil after the hosts also won the first test a week ago 39-19. The emphatic victory underlined the huge difference a week can make to a team like Namibia with both Head Coach Phil Davies and backline coach Pieter Rossow having had more time with the team. Saturday’s test victory was a more controlled and clinical performance than a week ago. Russia also produced a better performance but the difference was that Namibia improved a great deal more and the five tries to one was testimony to the hosts dominance of the match watched by just over five thousand spectactors.
Namibian captain Jacques Burger thanking the Russian team for traveling to Windhoek for the Windhoek Draught Friendship Series.