WATCH | Ramaphosa to Boks: 'You've got 57-million South Africans standing behind you'
A video showing a heartfelt phone call between Springbok captain Siya Kolisi and Cyril Ramaphosa was shared by the president on Twitter.
“I am so proud of you. I'm very proud of the team as well. You guys have done extremely well.”
These are the words from President Cyril Ramaphosa to Springbok captain Siya Kolisi during a video call at the weekend. The call was made ahead of the team's Rugby World Cup semifinal against Wales on Sunday.
Ramaphosa expressed how proud he was of the national rugby team, and said he was coming to the final.
“You've got 57-million South Africans standing behind you.
“I'm coming to the final. I'm coming to lift the Webb Ellis trophy with you. So make sure you book my ticket to the final,” he said.
The last time South Africa won the Rugby World Cup was in 2007, winning 15-6 against England. We may just have an opportunity to do it again. Earlier I spoke to Siya and assured him and the team of our unwavering support ahead of the semis against Wales. Best wishes to our boys. pic.twitter.com/4Va2TDbTVp— Cyril Ramaphosa 🇿🇦 (@CyrilRamaphosa) October 26, 2019
Kolisi thanked Ramaphosa for his support.
“Thank you, sir. I really appreciate the call and the support. It really means a lot to the us on the team. We will do our best to make you guys proud.”
In a TimesLIVE report, Kolisi said the phone call from Ramaphosa was “awesome”.
“It was awesome to get a phone call from the president‚” he said. “It was special for him to take time out to wish us luck. Also all the support we have been getting from South Africa.
“We are giving our best. We expected to make a few mistakes. I’m really glad we could handle the pressure to the end‚” he said.
The Springboks claimed a 19-16 win against Wales on Sunday to reach their third final, and will go face-to-face with England in this year's final on Saturday November 2 in Yokohama, Japan.
This was the third time the Springboks beat Wales in a rugby world cup. In 2011, they beat them 17-16 in the group stages, and then 23-19 in the quarterfinals in 2015.
The video call had everyone talking. Here is a snapshot of some reactions: