Sport in South Africa
Sport in South Africa truly unites the nation. The South Africans were banned from a number of international sporting competitions due to the apartheid, but post-apartheid they have been one of the most successful nations in a variety of sports, namely cricket and rugby.
Rugby Union is the most popular sport in South Africa. They are the current world champions (2007) and won the world cup in 1995, the first time they participated in the world cup. Nelson Mandela told the Springboks captain, François Pienaar, to win the world cup ‘to bring the nation together’. They even made a film about Mandela's and Pienaar's relationship - Invictus (3/5). Their 1995 Rugby World Cup victory was one of the happiest moments of a new, post-apartheid nation, and solely achieved through team-spirit and crowd backing.
Cricket is also a major sport in South Africa, in which they have been the world’s number one one-day cricket team and successful in a number of competitions. They currently have the best bowler in the world in Dale Steyn.
Soccer is growingly in popularity year by year, and it came to its pinnacle in 2010 when South Africa became the first African nation to host to Football World Cup.
South Africa were one of the liveliest teams, and the crowd participation was a joy to watch. Each stadium was ‘buzzing’ with noise, even if vuvuzela’s were a little irritating after a while.