Springboks kick off World Cup campaign

The sound of support for the Springboks as they launch their Rugby World Cup campaign

JOHANNESBURG - Former Springbok captain Victor Matfield and current Springbok centre Jesse Kriel sang and danced with the Gwijo Squad at the launch of the Springboks' World Cup campaign.

The launch with sponsor MTN took place at Hype Park Shopping Centre on Wednesday.

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Matfield -- who led the Bulls to Super 14 glory in 2007 and in the same year was man of the match in the Rugby World Cup final against England -- is hopeful that the Springboks will do well at this year’s tournament in Japan.

Kriel, who is currently recovering from an ankle injury, is a strong contender to wear the number 13 jersey for the Springboks at the World Cup after putting in some scintillating performances for the Bulls in Super Rugby this year.

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The Gwijo Squad have rapidly gained popularity in supporting the team since making their first public appearance when Springbok captain Siya Kolisi became the first black player to lead the national rugby team last year in June at Ellis Park.

Since then the Gwijo Squad -- which is made up of professionals and students -- have gone on to add their voice at venues such as the Wanderers Stadium in support of the Proteas.

The group sings traditional Xhosa songs and have again promised to throw their support behind the Springboks in their Rugby Championship matches against Australia and Argentina at Ellis Park and Loftus Versfeld next month and all the way to the World Cup in Japan.