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#RWC10: Impact of event on SA close to Habana’s heart

Bryan Habana ended the tournament in 2007 as the top scorer.

FILE: Springbok wing Bryan Habana. Picture: AFP.

CAPE TOWN - Springbok wing Bryan Habana says the impact of 2007 on the South African public is what the players will hold close to their hearts.

Habana, the Springboks' record try scorer, ended the tournament in 2007 as the top scorer as he played a pivotal part in the team's success, scoring eight tries.

Habana shared his thoughts on the experience of winning the William Webb Ellis trophy.

“Led by an incredible captain in John Smit, some world-class players will go down as legends of the game. To be able to come back to South Africa and see how much it meant to the South African public was something I think all of us will hold incredibly close to our hearts for the rest of our lives.”

Habana said the victorious Boks in the1995 Rugby World side played a huge role in his attitude to rugby.

“For me personally to be inspired by the group to take up the game of rugby, to then be on the other end in 2007, to be a part of a group that won the World Cup outside of South Africa for the first time was incredibly special.”

Habana says that after the 2003 World Cup, South Africa was at its lowest ebb but Jake White was determined they could win the next World Cup.

“When White took over and in that first team meeting said to us that we got to believe that 2007… we are going to win the World Cup.

“Given where South African rugby was at that point it was pretty far-fetched, but to go on that journey that has some massive highs, from winning the Tri-Nations in 2004, to getting beaten 49-0 a year before the World Cup in 2007 by Australia, was an incredibly special journey.”

“The bonds formed between the players within that group, both the highs and the lows that we experienced together, sort of galvanised us in a way that gave us a chance to do something special.

“The bonds formed, the memories made will forever live on and even though quite a few of us are still playing the game 10 years on.

“Hopefully at our 20-year anniversary, we will be able to truly come together as a squad and reconjure up what was an incredible journey for each and every one of us.”

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