32-player Springbok Women’s squad announced for Rugby World Cup

32 player springbok womens squad announced for rugby world cup

CAPE TOWN – In the “tallest building in Cape Town”, FNB, the proud sponsor of the Springbok Women along with SA Rugby, had the privilege of announcing the women’s squad for the delayed Rugby World Cup in New Zealand.

On a Wednesday evening in the Mother City, coach Stanley Raubenheimer had to whittle his squad down to the 32 players who will have the honour of representing South Africa at the World Cup.

Nolusindiso Booi will lead the team to New Zealand in what will be a third Rugby World Cup for the South African captain and lock, alongside Zenay Jordaan, who also played in the 2010 and 2014 tournaments, while Tayla Kinsey and Asithandile Ntoyanto will play in their second tournaments, having represented South Africa in the 2014 showpiece in England.

Raubenheimer says that these four players (Booi, Jordaan, Kinsey and Ntoyanto) with World Cup experience are crucial and the fact that they are the only players who have been at this level might be a disadvantage given the teams that they are facing in France, Fiji and England.

Rugby World Cup debuts are on the cards for the remainder of the squad, who will look to not be wallflowers during this tournament but compete despite the lack of experience and resources compared to their opponents in Pool C at the rugby showpiece.

At the capping ceremony, where friends and family were invited, the four previous Springbok Women’s captains were also present – Mandisa Williams, Ingrid Botha, Nomsebenzi Tsotsobe and [Zenay] Jordaan. Tsobobe, being the first-ever women’s captain for South Africa, was the one handing out the caps for the 2022 contingent, saying that this was a historic day for the women’s game given that a ceremony of this magnitude and with this corporate backing had never happened before in women’s rugby. She was proud of what had been built on the foundation she had laid, along with the three other captains.

SA Rugby president Mark Alexander congratulated the players on their selection and said they had done South Africa proud already.

“We all know where we started, and to have seen this team grow – in stature and performance – is testimony to the abilities, planning and execution of the coaching staff and the Rugby Department at SA Rugby,” said Alexander.

“We are sending this team to New Zealand knowing they will be very competitive, fit as can be and mentally strong to represent every South African back home. Congratulations to every player, but also to their families and loved ones, as they are often those who make the real sacrifices. Thank you to all those who silently support in the background,” he added.

The vibe at FNB Portside was positive and emotional at the same time – these players have had to wait since qualifying in 2019 to actually head to the World Cup.

Booi, who is playing in her third Rugby World Cup, said: “The players in the squad, and those that were part of the journey over the last four or five years, all contributed to the effort.”

“Those who helped us qualify way back in 2019 and others that played along the way, but who are not here, we thank you for that.

“To my team-mates, we carry the hopes and dreams of many a young girl, but we also carry the responsibility of playing for the South African flag and the Springbok badge. Those demand a standard of excellence, and we are determined to deliver such a performance,” added Booi.

It’s not every day you get to be part of such an event on a global stage and Raubenheimer has had to work through limited resources and a pandemic to find the team who will represent a diverse and passionate rugby nation.

He says that they just need support and respect for what they;ve managed to do and that he hopes South Africans can see the work they’ve put in as a squad.

“I feel a sense of anticipation now, thinking back to where we started and how we have grown, and that we are now ready to take on the best teams in the world. We have our objectives and one of them is to not only make the country proud with our effort, but ourselves as well.

“This squad travelled a wonderful journey together and we can now celebrate that by taking on the biggest teams on the biggest stage.”

Springbok Women’s schedule (SA kick-off times):

Saturday 8 October:
03h15: South Africa v France

Sunday 16 October:
06h45: South Africa v Fiji

Sunday 23 October:
06h45: South Africa v England

Springbok Women’s squad for the Rugby World Cup in New Zealand:

Props:

Sanelisiwe Charlie (EP Queens) – 4 tests
Babalwa Latsha (DHL Western Province) – 17 tests, 10 points (2 tries)
Monica Mazibukwana (EP Queens) – 3 tests
Azisa Mkiva (DHL Western Province) – 1 test
Yonela Ngxingolo (Border Ladies) – 18 tests, 5 points (1 try)
Asithandile Ntoyanto (Border Ladies) – 12 tests, 10 points (2 tries)

Hookers:

Roseline Botes (DHL Western Province) – 5 tests, 10 points (2 tries)
Micke Gunter (Cell C Sharks Women) – 3 tests
Lindelwa Gwala (Cell C Sharks Women) – 18 tests, 10 points (2 tries)

Locks:

Nolusindiso Booi (captain, DHL Western Province) – 30 tests, 10 points (2 tries)
Lerato Makua (Blue Bulls Women) – 5 tests
Nompumelelo Mathe (Cell C Sharks Women) – 8 tests, 10 points (2 tries).
Catha Jacobs (Blue Bulls Women) – 7 tests

Loose Forwards:

Lusanda Dumke (Border Ladies) – 15 tests, 25 points (5 tries)
Aseza Hele (Boland Dames) – 13 tests, 25 points (5 tries)
Sinazo Mcatshulwa (DHL Western Province) – 15 tests, 35 points (7 tries)
Sizophila Solontsi (Cell C Sharks Women) – 13 tests, 25 points (five tries)

Utility Forward:

Rights Mkhari (Blue Bulls Women) – 8 tests, 35 points (7 tries)

Scrumhalves:

Tayla Kinsey (Cell C Sharks Women) – 21 tests, 44 points (2 tries, 14 conversions, 2 penalty goals)
Rumandi Potgieter (Blue Bulls Women) – 3 tests
Unam Tose (Border Ladies) – 11 tests

Flyhalves:

Libbie Janse van Rensburg (Blue Bulls Women) – 10 tests, 96 points (4 tries, 26 conversions, 7 penalty goals, 1 drop goal)
Zenay Jordaan (EP Queens) – 34 tests, 81 points (10 tries, 11 conversions, 3 penalty goals)

Midfielders:

Jakkie Cilliers (Blue Bulls Women) – 2 tests, 13 points (1 try, 2 penalty goals, 1 conversion)
Zintle Mpupha (DHL Western Province) – 15 tests, 86 points (16 tries, 3 conversions)
Aphiwe Ngwevu (Border Ladies) – 12 tests, 35 points (7 tries)
Chumisa Qawe (DHL Western Province) – 9 tests, 5 points (1 try)

Outside Backs:

Nomawethu Mabenge (EP Queens) – 9 tests, 25 points (5 tries)
Chuma Qawe (DHL Western Province) – 3 tests
Eloise Webb (Border Ladies) – 7 tests, 30 points (6 tries)

Utility Backs:

Simamkele Namba (DHL Western Province) – 6 tests, 30 points (6 tries)
Nadine Roos (Blue Bulls Women) – 8 tests, 25 points (5 tries)

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