Welwitschias aim to win two games at World Cup

The coach of the senior national rugby team, Allister Coetzee, says his team is working towards winning their first game, or at least two games at the upcoming Rugby World Cup.

The 2023 Rugby World Cup will be held in France from 08 September to 28 October 2023.

Namibia is in Group A alongside Italy, New Zealand, Uruguay, and host nation France.

The Welwitschias, as the Namibian national rugby union team is affectionately known, is a tier-two nation in the World Rugby tier system. They have participated in six Rugby World Cup competitions since their first appearance in 1999 and are yet to win a game.

Speaking on Monday during his squad announcement, Coetzee said the recently concluded Tour of South America gave his technical team and players a better understanding of what is needed for them to compete well at their seventh World Cup appearance.

“The tour to South America was massively successful in working towards our goals. This was the first time the team played together, and a lot of growth took place,” he said, adding that he is happy with where they are as a team.

Coetzee added that Namibia has talented players even though they are not spoilt for choice.

“This weekend we are not going to use the World Cup squad when we play the Blue Bulls as all players never got an opportunity during our World Cup tour to South America, therefore we will still give players an opportunity to compete in this game,” Coetzee said.

Namibia’s 2023 Rugby World Cup squad is as follows:

Forwards: Jason Benade, Adriaan Booysen, Aranos Coetzee, Wian Conradie, Tiaan de Klerk, Prince !Gaoseb, Richard Hardwick, Max Katjijeko, Adriaan Ludick, Johan Retief, Desiderius Sethie, Mahepisa Tjeriko, Tjiuee Uanivi, Louis van der Westhuizen, Torsten van Jaarsveld, PJ van Lill and Casper Viviers.

Backs: Oela Blaauw, Danco Burger, Johan Deysel, JC Greyling, Cliven Loubser, Le Roux Malan, Gerswin Mouton, Chad Plato, Alcino Isaacs, Divan Rossouw, Damian Stevens, Tiaan Swanepoel, Jacques Theron and Andre van der Berg.

Source: The Namibian Press Agency