Namibia national rugby union team

Namibia national rugby union team

Namibia
Union Namibia Rugby Union
Nickname(s) Welwitschias
Emblem(s) African fish eagle
Ground(s) Hage Geingob Rugby Stadium
Coach(es) Phil Davies
Captain(s) Jacques Burger
Most caps Johnny Redelinghuys (50)
Top scorer Theuns Kotzé (344)
Most tries Gerhard Mans (27)
First international
South West Africa 0 – 9 British Lions
(5 July 1955)
Largest win
 Namibia 112 – 0 Madagascar 
(June 15, 2002)
Largest defeat
 Australia 142 – 0 Namibia 
(October 25, 2003)
World Cup
Appearances 5 (First in 1999)
Best result Bottom of pool, 1999, 2003, 2007, 2011, 2015

The Namibia national rugby union team, nicknamed the Welwitschias or Biltongboere, are a tier-two nation in the World Rugby tier system, and have participated in five Rugby World Cup competitions since their first appearance in 1999. They are governed by the Namibia Rugby Union.

Namibia has been playing international rugby since the early 1900s. As well as having competed at the World Cup, Namibia annually competes in the Africa Cup. Until independence, players for Namibia were also eligible to represent South Africa, with Namibian-born Springboks including Jan Ellis and, more recently, Percy Montgomery. As of 24 September 2015 they are ranked 20th in the world.[1]

Contents

  • History 1
    • 1990s 1.1
    • 2000–present 1.2
  • World Cup Record 2
  • Record 3
  • Current squad 4
  • Individual all-time records 5
    • Most caps 5.1
    • Most tries 5.2
    • Most points 5.3
    • Most points in a match 5.4
    • Most tries in a match 5.5
    • Most matches as captain 5.6
    • Youngest players 5.7
    • Oldest players 5.8
  • See also 6
  • Notes 7
  • External links 8

History

1990s

Rugby union has been played in Namibia since 1916 when it was introduced by soldiers from South Africa who had invaded the German-run colony.

Before Namibia gained its independence in 1990, the team, as South West Africa, played in South Africa's domestic club competition, the Currie Cup. The team achieved their best result in the 1989 season, where they finished third.

The Namibia Rugby Union was formed in March 1990, and it joined the International Rugby Board in the same month. Independence came too late for Namibia to qualify for the 1991 Rugby World Cup. Hardened by regular, tough competition in the Currie Cup, the first few years of Namibian rugby union were relatively successful, their highest point being 2–0 home series victories over Ireland and Italy in 1991. That year the Welwitschias won all 10 of their Tests, the others being five victories against Zimbabwe and one against Portugal in Lisbon. One of Namibia's players, Andre Stoop was signed by English champion rugby league club, Wigan.

During the international seasons Namibia played six games; the first of which was a 55–23 win over Zimbabwe. Following another victory over Zimbabwe, in 1993 Namibia played Wales in Windhoek, losing 23–38. Namibia completed big victories over the Arabian Gulf rugby team, Kenya and Zimbabwe in the initial rounds of 1995 Rugby World Cup qualifying.

Russia toured Namibia in 1994, defeating the home team 31–12 in Windhoek. Although Namibia defeated Zimbabwe that year, the team lost to Côte d'Ivoire and drew with Morocco (all in Casablanca). In 1996 Namibia played two matches; losing 13–15 to Zimbabwe, and then defeating them by one point in a subsequent meeting. They played two games in 1997 as well, losing to Tonga and Zimbabwe.

During 1998 Namibia took part in the African tournaments for 1999 Rugby World Cup qualification. They started out in Round 3, where they finished second in the pool behind Zimbabwe on points difference (defeating Zimbabwe but losing to Tunisia). Namibia defeated Côte d'Ivoire, Morocco and Zimbabwe to qualify for the 1999 Rugby World Cup.

The team's participation was put in doubt when the Namibian government's Sports Commission barred the team from participating in a South African competition it had been using as preparation, and threatened to stop the team from taking part in the World Cup. This followed criticisms from non-white rugby clubs that the Namibian Rugby Union displayed racist attitudes.[2] Ultimately, however, the team were allowed to take part.

The 1999 World Cup marked their debut at the tournament and since then they have been Africa's second representative alongside South Africa. While they suffered heavy defeats by France, Fiji and Canada, they took pride in scoring an early try and being level with France after 20 minutes.

2000–present

However with a small player base, and lacking frequent or strong competition, the team has deteriorated in recent years. Their record in the World Cups has been poor as they have not yet managed a win. Their record defeat, 142–0 against Australia in the 2003 tournament, led to some questioning the presence of the minor teams at the tournament.

Namibia initially struggled in the qualifiers for the 2007 tournament, suffering a shock defeat to Kenya, their first ever to the African Great Lakes nation, and another to Tunisia. Following the Kenya loss, the Namibian squad slumped to 28th in the IRB rankings. However, after defeating Tunisia at home, the team was effectively through to two deciding matches against Morocco, to determine which of the two African nations would make it to France in 2007. Namibia convincingly won both legs, qualifying for the World Cup.

As the lowest ranked team at the start of the 2007 World Cup, Namibia was given no chance in its opening game of against Ireland. However, the Namibian squad frustrated Ireland, then the 5th ranked team in the world, and scored two tries for its narrowest World Cup loss of 17–32. They were convincingly beaten in their games with Argentina (63–3) and France (87–10). And, in the game in which they were seen as having the best chance to win, they suffered a disappointing 30–0 loss to Georgia, to end the tournament winless.

The African side was able to win the IRB Nations Cup in 2010.

Namibia achieved their fourth World Cup qualification in a row after defeating Côte d'Ivoire in 2011. They were drawn into Pool D, with South Africa, Wales, Fiji and Samoa. Their first match in the Rugby World Cup, held in New Zealand (at the Rotorua International Stadium) resulted in a defeat by Fiji by 45–29. Their second match in this tournament was a 49–12 loss to Samoa but the third was an 87–0 loss to South Africa. In their final pool game, Wales proved to be too strong, as Namibia conceded 12 tries in an 81–7 defeat. Theuns Kotzé provided his side's one consolation, as his conversion of a Heinz Koll try made him Namibia's all-time highest Rugby World Cup points scorer.

The Welwitschias played the 2015 Vodacom Cup, collecting six defeats and one win against the Limpopo Blue Bulls. Namibia qualified for their fourth Rugby World Cup in 2015. They were placed in Pool C with New Zealand, Georgia, Tonga and Argentina.

World Cup Record

World Cup record World Cup Qualification record
Year Round P W D L F A P W D L F A
1987 Not invited -
1991 Did not enter Did not enter
1995 Did not qualify 6 4 1 1 218 104
1999 Pool Stage 3 0 0 3 42 186 5 4 0 1 127 78
2003 Pool Stage 4 0 0 4 28 310 4 3 0 1 197 73
2007 Pool Stage 4 0 0 4 30 212 6 4 0 2 192 96
2011 Pool Stage 4 0 0 4 44 266 4 3 1 0 115 58
2015 Qualified 7 5 0 2 289 159
Total 5/8 15 0 0 15 144 974 32 23 2 7 1138 568

Record

Top 25 rankings as on 1 November 2015[3]
Rank Change* Team Points
1  New Zealand 96.10
2  Australia 89.33
3  South Africa 87.66
4  Wales 83.49
5  Argentina 82.59
6  Ireland 81.17
7  France 79.77
8  England 79.77
9  Scotland 77.94
10  Japan 77.05
11  Fiji 76.96
12  Italy 72.74
13  Tonga 71.60
14  Georgia 71.45
15  Samoa 70.36
16  United States 68.66
17  Romania 66.59
18  Canada 62.65
19  Uruguay 62.11
20  Namibia 61.75
21  Spain 61.54
22  Russia 61.10
23  Chile 57.34
24  Hong Kong 57.31
25  South Korea 56.70
*Change from the previous week
Namibia's Historical Rankings
Source: World Rugby - Graph updated to 1 November 2015[3]

Below is table of the representative rugby matches played by a Namibia national XV at test level up until 11 October 2015.[4]

Opponent Played Won Lost Drawn Win % For Aga Diff
 Arabian Gulf 1 1 0 0 100.00% 64 20 +44
 Argentina 3 0 3 0 0.00% 36 194 -158
 Argentina Jaguars 2 0 2 0 0.00% 23 77 -54
 Australia 1 0 1 0 0.00% 0 142 -142
 Canada 2 0 2 0 0.00% 24 89 -65
 Fiji 2 0 2 0 0.00% 43 116 -73
 France 2 0 2 0 0.00% 23 134 -111
 France XV 2 0 2 0 0.00% 36 49 -13
 Georgia 5 1 4 0 20.00% 73 112 -39
 Germany 2 2 0 0 100.00% 137 33 +104
 Hong Kong 1 1 0 0 100.00% 22 12 +10
 Ireland 4 2 2 0 50.00% 65 117 -52
 Italy 3 2 1 0 66.67% 74 75 -1
 Ivory Coast 4 2 1 1 50.00% 101 50 +51
 Kenya 9 7 2 0 77.78% 428 155 +273
 Madagascar 4 3 1 0 75.00% 310 84 +226
 Morocco 7 4 2 1 57.14% 133 137 -4
 New Zealand 1 0 1 0 0.00% 14 58 -44
 Portugal 7 5 2 0 71.43% 229 125 +104
 Romania 5 1 4 0 20.00% 58 138 -80
 Russia 4 2 2 0 50.00% 109 85 +24
 Samoa 2 0 2 0 0.00% 25 89 -64
 Scotland A 1 1 0 0 0.00% 23 20 +3
 Senegal 3 3 0 0 100.00% 68 40 +28
 South Africa 2 0 2 0 0.00% 13 192 -179
 Spain 4 1 3 0 25.00% 96 97 -1
 Tonga 2 0 2 0 0.00% 35 55 -20
 Tunisia 9 6 3 0 66.67% 197 152 +45
 Uganda 2 1 1 0 50.00% 96 33 +63
 Uruguay 1 0 1 0 0.00% 12 23 -11
 Wales 4 0 4 0 0.00% 69 171 -102
 West Germany 1 1 0 0 100.00% 54 7 +47
 Zambia 2 2 0 0 100.00% 132 20 +112
 Zimbabwe 28 26 2 0 92.86% 1023 557 +466
Total 131 74 55 2 56.49% 3831 3441 +390

Current squad

Namibia's 31-man squad for the 2015 Rugby World Cup.[5]

  • Head Coach: Phil Davies
  • Caps Updated: 11 October 2015
Note: Flags indicate national union for the club/province as defined by World Rugby.
Player Position Date of Birth (Age) Caps Club/province
Torsten van Jaarsveld Hooker (1987-06-30) 30 June 1987 11 Cheetahs
Louis van der Westhuizen Hooker (1995-02-25) 25 February 1995 6 Leopards
Aranos Coetzee Prop (1988-03-14) 14 March 1988 8 Cheetahs
AJ de Klerk Prop (1987-12-19) 19 December 1987 7 Wanderers
Jaco Engels Prop (1980-12-17) 17 December 1980 15 Trustco United
Raoul Larson Prop (1984-05-14) 14 May 1984 8 SWD Eagles
Johnny Redelinghuys Prop (1984-02-02) 2 February 1984 50 Wanderers
Casper Viviers Prop (1988-06-01) 1 June 1988 15 Trustco United
Tjiuee Uanivi Lock (1990-12-31) 31 December 1990 14 Unattached
Janco Venter Lock (1994-09-19) 19 September 1994 11 Maties
Renaldo Bothma Flanker (1989-09-18) 18 September 1989 10 Toyota Verblitz
Jacques Burger (c) Flanker (1983-07-29) 29 July 1983 38 Saracens
Wian Conradie Flanker (1994-10-14) 14 October 1994 3 UJ
Tinus du Plessis Flanker (1984-05-20) 20 May 1984 48 Wanderers
Rohan Kitshoff Flanker (1985-09-13) 13 September 1985 26 Durbanville-Bellville
Leneve Damens Number 8 (1993-05-30) 30 May 1993 5 Wanderers
PJ van Lill Number 8 (1983-12-04) 4 December 1983 43 Bayonne
Eniell Buitendag Scrum-half (1989-06-21) 21 June 1989 15 Wanderers
Eugene Jantjies Scrum-half (1986-10-08) 8 October 1986 48 Dinamo București
Damian Stevens Scrum-half (1995-06-02) 2 June 1995 4 Ikey Tigers
Theuns Kotzé Fly-half (1987-07-16) 16 July 1987 29 Bourg-en-Bresse
Darryl de la Harpe Centre (1986-10-02) 2 October 1986 29 Western Suburbs
Johan Deysel Centre (1991-09-26) 26 September 1991 12 Leopards
JC Greyling Centre (1991-06-21) 21 June 1991 10 Old Wesley
Danie van Wyk Centre (1986-03-30) 30 March 1986 15 Trustco United
Conrad Marais Wing (1989-04-26) 26 April 1989 10 Béziers
David Philander Wing (1987-01-04) 4 January 1987 26 Spotswood United
Heinrich Smit Wing (1990-11-21) 21 November 1990 13 NWU Pukke
Russell van Wyk Wing (1990-08-12) 12 August 1990 7 Western Suburbs
Chrysander Botha Fullback (1988-07-13) 13 July 1988 38 Exeter Chiefs
Johan Tromp Fullback (1990-12-23) 23 December 1990 22 Wanderers

Individual all-time records

Most caps

# Player Pos Span Mat Start Sub Pts Tries Conv Pens Drop Won Lost Draw %
1. Johnny Redelinghuys Prop 2006– 50 32 18 25 5 0 0 0 23 26 1 47.00
2. Tinus du Plessis Flanker 2006– 48 40 8 35 7 0 0 0 24 23 1 51.04
Eugene Jantjies Scrum-half 2006– 48 33 15 50 4 3 7 1 21 26 1 44.79
4. PJ van Lill Flanker 2006– 43 28 15 20 4 0 0 0 21 21 1 50.00
5. Jacques Burger Flanker 2004– 38 37 1 35 7 0 0 0 19 18 1 51.31
Chrysander Botha Fly-half 2008– 38 36 2 155 16 15 15 0 21 16 1 56.57
7. Hugo Horn Hooker 1997–2011 35 28 7 10 2 0 0 0 14 20 1 41.42
8. Herman Lintvelt Flanker 1998–2007 34 23 11 40 8 0 0 0 16 18 0 47.05
Nico Esterhuyse Lock 2006–11 34 32 2 0 0 0 0 0 14 19 1 42.64
10. Darryl de la Harpe Centre 2010- 29 23 6 15 3 0 0 0 14 15 0 48.27

Last updated: Namibia vs Argentina, 11 October 2015. Statistics include officially capped matches only.

Most tries

# Player Pos Span Mat Start Sub Pts Tries Conv Pens Drop
1. Gerhard Mans Wing 1990-1994 27 26 1 118 27 0 0 0
2. Eden Meyer Wing 1991-1996 21 20 1 98 21 0 0 0
3. Chrysander Botha Fullback 2008- 38 36 2 155 16 15 15 0
4. Melrick Afrika Wing 2003-2007 23 18 5 62 12 1 0 0
5. Rohan Kitshoff Wing 2010- 26 15 11 55 11 0 0 0
6. du Preez Grobler Centre 2001-2008 25 21 4 50 10 0 0 0
Corné Powell Centre 2001-2007 26 24 2 50 10 0 0 0
Riaan van Wyk Wing 2002-2004 10 10 0 50 10 0 0 0
Johan Tromp Centre 2012- 22 15 7 50 10 0 0 0
9. Barries Barnard Flanker 1990-1993 22 22 0 36 9 0 0 0

Last updated: Namibia vs Argentina, 11 October 2015. Statistics include officially capped matches only.

Most points

# Player Pos Span Mat Start Sub Pts Tries Conv Pens Drop
1. Theuns Kotzé Fly-half 2011- 29 28 1 344 4 78 51 5
2. Jaco Coetzee Fly-half 1990-1995 28 27 1 335 6 81 45 3
3. Mot Schreuder Fly-half 2002-2007 19 17 2 158 4 42 18 0
4. Chrysander Botha Fullback 2008- 38 36 2 155 16 15 15 0
5. Gerhard Mans Wing 1990-1994 27 26 1 118 27 0 0 0
6. Rudie van Vuuren Fly-half 1997-2003 14 9 5 109 3 26 14 0
7. Eden Meyer Wing 1991-1996 21 20 1 98 21 0 0 0
8. Emile Wessels Fly-half 2002-2010 18 16 2 94 0 14 21 1
9. Lean van Dyk Fullback 1998-2002 10 10 0 70 3 11 11 0
10. Jaco Kotze Wing 1995-2004 16 14 2 67 7 4 8 0

Last updated: Namibia vs Argentina, 11 October 2015. Statistics include officially capped matches only.

Most points in a match

# Player Pos Pts Tries Conv Pens Drop Opposition Venue Date
1. Justinus van der Westhuizen Fly-half 33 3 9 0 0  Zambia Windhoek 26/05/2007
2. Jaco Coetzee Fly-half 30 3 6 1 0  Kenya Nairobi 07/07/1993
3. Chrysander Botha Fullback 29 2 5 3 0  Ivory Coast Windhoek 27/06/2009
4. Moolman Olivier Fly-half 26 1 11 0 0  Portugal Windhoek 21/04/1990
5. Riaan van Wyk Wing 25 5 0 0 0  Madagascar Windhoek 15/06/2002
Theuns Kotzé Fly-half 25 1 4 4 0  Russia Windhoek 18/07/2015
6. Gerhard Mans Wing 24 6 0 0 0  Portugal Windhoek 21/04/1990
Mot Schreuder Fly-half 24 0 12 0 0  Kenya Windhoek 27/05/2006
Theuns Kotzé Fly-half 24 0 12 0 0  Madagascar Windhoek 06/07/2014
10. Theuns Kotzé Fly-half 22 0 2 6 0  Spain Windhoek 17/11/2012

Last updated: Namibia vs Argentina, 11 October 2015. Statistics include officially capped matches only.

Most tries in a match

# Player Pos Pts Tries Conv Pens Drop Opposition Venue Date
1. Gerhard Mans Wing 24 6 0 0 0  Portugal Windhoek 21/04/1990
2. Riaan van Wyk Wing 25 5 0 0 0  Madagascar Windhoek 15/06/2002
3. Eden Meyer Wing 20 4 0 0 0  Zimbabwe Windhoek 16/05/1992
Melrick Afrika Wing 20 4 0 0 0  Kenya Nairobi 16/08/2003
Renaldo Bothma Number 8 20 4 0 0 0  Madagascar Nairobi 06/07/2014
6. 13 players on 3 tries

Last updated: Namibia vs Argentina, 11 October 2015. Statistics include officially capped matches only.

Most matches as captain

# Player Pos Span Mat Won Lost Draw % Pts Tries Conv Pens Drop
1. Gerhard Mans Wing 1990-1994 26 20 5 1 78.84 118 27 0 0 0
2. Jacques Burger Flanker 2007 18 8 10 0 44.44 25 5 0 0 0
3. Corné Powell Centre 2002-2007 13 9 4 0 69.23 25 5 0 0 0
Kees Lensing Prop 2006-2009 13 6 6 1 50.00 0 0 0 0 0
5. PJ van Lill Flanker 2012- 11 7 4 0 63.63 10 2 0 0 0
6. Quinn Hough Flanker 1998-1999 10 6 4 0 60.00 25 5 0 0 0
7. Jacques Nieuwenhuis Flanker 2008-2011 6 3 3 0 50.00 10 2 0 0 0

Last updated: Namibia vs Argentina, 11 October 2015. Statistics include officially capped matches only.

Youngest players

# Player Pos Age Opposition Venue Date
1. Chris Arries (Wing) 18 years and 36 days  Kenya Windhoek 16/11/2013
2. Andre de Klerk (Lock) 18 years and 176 days  Ivory Coast Abidjan 14/06/2009
3. Louis van der Westhuizen (Hooker) 18 years and 256 days  Zimbabwe Windhoek 08/11/2013
4. Ryan Witbooi (Wing) 18 years and 342 days  Zambia Nchingola 14/08/2004
5. Morne Louw (Prop) 18 years and 345 days  Kenya Nairobi 09/09/2006
6. Duimpie Theron Lock 19 years and 128 days  Ivory Coast Casablanca 12/09/1998
7. Eugene Jantjies (Scrum-half) 19 years and 231 days  Kenya Windhoek 27/05/2006
8. Danie Vermeulen (Prop) 19 years and 356 days  Zimbabwe Windhoek 01/03/1996
9. Hugo Horn (Hooker) 20 years and 15 days  Tonga Windhoek 24/05/1997
10. Chrysander Botha Fullback 20 years and 20 days  Zimbabwe Windhoek 02/08/2008

Last updated: Namibia vs Argentina, 11 October 2015. Statistics include officially capped matches only.

Oldest players

# Player Pos Age Opposition Venue Date
1. Manie Grobler Prop 38 years and 187 days  Zimbabwe Windhoek 16/05/1992
2. Khaki Goosen Flanker 36 years and 103 days  Wales Windhoek 05/06/1993
3. Jané du Toit Prop 35 years and 359 days  Wales New Plymouth 26/09/2011
4. Doug Jeffery (Wing) 35 years and 135 days  France Windhoek 23/06/1990
5. Riaan Jantjies (Scrum-half) 35 years and 29 days  Zimbabwe Windhoek 22/07/2000
6. Leon Stoop Scrum-half 35 years and 18 days  Ivory Coast Casablanca 16/06/1994
7. Deon Gouws Wing 34 years and 315 days  Zimbabwe Windhoek 14/07/2001
8. Jaco Engels Prop 34 years and 298 days  Argentina Leicester 11/10/2015
9. Willem Maritz Flanker 34 years and 269 days  Zimbabwe Windhoek 07/09/1991
10. Cor van Tonder Hooker 34 years and 241 days  Spain Windhoek 17/11/2012

Last updated: Namibia vs Argentina, 11 October 2015. Statistics include officially capped matches only.

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Rugby World Rankings
  2. ^ Chris Hewett (29 April 1999). "Rugby Union: England bucks the global growth trend". The Independent. 
  3. ^ a b "World Rankings". World Rugby. Retrieved 1 November 2015. 
  4. ^ Namibia rugby statistics
  5. ^ Namibia announce RWC squad

External links

  • Namibianrugby.com
  • A place to meet and chat about namibian rugby.
  • Namibian rugby union news from Planet Rugby
  • Namibia World Cup 2007 Preview (in Portuguese)
  • Namibia World Cup 2007 Preview & follow-up (in French)