Welwitchias aim to win one game at Rugby World Cup

WINDHOEK; The Namibian senior national rugby team arrived home on Tuesday to a heroes’ welcome after qualifying for the 2015 Rugby World Cup, set for England from 18 September to 31 October.

Namibia’s Welwitchias qualified for their fifth consecutive Rugby World Cup on Sunday when they ended top of their group with the best goal difference at the Confederation of African Rugby (CAR) tournament, which ended in Madagascar on Sunday.

Namibia has participated in the Rugby World Cup on four occasions – in 1999, 2003, 2007 and 2011 – but have not yet won a game.

Hundreds of people – including family, friends and rugby supporters – received the players at the Hosea Kutako International Airport (HKIA).

National team coach Danie Vermeulen told the media there that their hard work starts right now, because they would like to win at least one game at the World Cup.

“When you coach the national team, it’s not about your own objective, but what is important for the team. My aim was to qualify for the World Cup, and then win at least one match at the World Cup,” he beamed.

Vermeulen said his players will try to give their best when they face New Zealand’s ‘All Blacks’, the reigning world champions, because Namibia has nothing to lose.

Other nations in Pool C with Namibia and New Zealand are Argentina, Tonga and Georgia.

Meanwhile, the Namibia Rugby Union (NRU)’s president Bradley Basson told Nampa at the airport that as an organisation, they have gone through their first hurdle, which was to qualify for the tournament, and that “real work starts now”.

“We are very proud of the funds we receive from the International Rugby Board (IRB) and the Namibian Government, but qualifying for the World Cup means we will have to step up our game,” he stated, while urging all corporate sponsors to come on board and help them prepare properly for the tournament.