The Bounce
Doing it for the fans

All Blacks in South Africa. The most cringe rugby week of the year.


I remember a few years ago how excited I would get for the All Blacks coming to South Africa. How my mates and I would make sure we have tickets to the test match, and the entire week planned around making it a big deal.

For so long that's exactly what it was, Springboks vs All Blacks, rugby's biggest game, and something I wouldn't miss for anything.

Seriously, Scarlett Johansson could have told me back in the day that her parents were away for the weekend, and without hesitation I would have told her that the Boks were playing the All Blacks.

Fast forward to today, and well, I'm not entirely sure what I'm doing for the game. I might go to a bar with some friends, I might watch at home with my cat, who knows.

In all honesty the entire week and everything about this match has become incredibly cringe.

What as often the deciding match in the Rugby Champioships is now a complete dead rubber. The All Blacks have the trophy won before even leaving for SA.

When they get to South Africa they are met by their adoring 'local fans'. These sad individuals, so desperate for meaningful belonging and purpose, with a supposed point to prove that they do whatever they can to prove what die hard New Zealanders they are at heart.

These people are baffling at best, but in this week each year they are out in their droves.

"I support the All Blacks because they play great rugby..." Ya, sure. Let's go with that.

Then there are the pre test press conferences where the New Zealanders do what they can to talk up the Springboks, and how they can't be underestimated, and that they are always tough opponents etc etc.

Thanks Sam, but you blokes average 50 against the Boks in recent times, and the only game the Boks have won against your team in recent times was with the help of a TV producer.

The Western Cape division of Cosatu are trying to stay relevant with some fresh claims of racism against someone which SARU are responsible for. They are again threatening strike action of some sort, but I think we all know they are probably just fishing for free tickets and a jersey.

If these guys really cared about things like Bok games getting shown on the SABC, how about picketing the failed SABC itself. Last I checked SARU don't have anything against the organisation, but they are a business at the end of the day and aren't just going to throw their product around to those who are grossly incompetent in every aspect of broadcasting.

And now, the latest edition to the cringe value of this week, we now get reminded every five minutes how down to earth the superstar All Blacks are. I mean, they carry their own bags, and clean their own change room...

Hashtag 'culture'.

So no, I'm not too excited about Saturday. I still support the Boks through and through and want them to win each and every time. This match up however, well it has become a bit of a beauty pageant. It used to mean something back in the day, but right now it's just something else to watch on TV.

I really hope it goes back to what it used to be, because it was once very very special.

New Zealand may always have the upper hand, but the Boks have some great players in this country, old and new. As a unit they also have enough appeal for everyone in South Africa to take an interest in, and we as South Africans really need a team to enjoy.

If anything, this match can become bigger and better than it ever was in current day South Africa. We just need to work together and be smart about how we get things there.

Tags: springboks vs all blacks, all black fans, rugby championship, sa vs nz, newlands


If you could play a pro sport, which would it be?

FB skyscraper
bj 2