Springbok women have shared vision ahead of Rugby World Cup: 'We can play this game too'

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Eloise Webb
Eloise Webb
Ashley Vlotman/Gallo Images

The Springbok Women are in New Zealand as they look to make the country proud at next week's 2022 Women's Rugby World Cup.

Eloise Webb says South Africa have a united vision to go onto the field, represent their country to the best of their abilities.

The Springboks Women face France, Fiji and England in Pool C of the tournament set to start from 8 October to 12 November. Pool A consists of New Zealand, Australia, Wales and Scotland and Pool B of Canada, USA, Italy and Japan.

"All of us are pretty excited about this as we were all part of the journey for a while now, and with us reaching New Zealand and already experiencing the vibe of the event, it is a great time to be around the Springbok Women team," said Webb.

"This is what it is all about - not only do we get to play at such an amazing event as the Rugby World Cup, but we also get to do so with top class teams, who we will be competing against soon.

"That is what every player in this squad wanted, the opportunity to play against the best teams out there and to measure ourselves against them. This is happening soon, so the feeling in the camp is real."

Webb is one of the six players - Lerato Makua, Zintle Mpupha, Simamkele Namba, Nadine Roos, Sizophila Solontsi - who was part of South Africa's Rugby World Cup Sevens squad in Cape Town earlier this month.

"It was touch and go for me to make it to the Rugby World Cup Sevens and it was a huge relief when I was declared fit and ready to play in Cape Town," said Webb.

"I wanted to play in that tournament, because you only get that opportunity to play in your own country at a World Cup once and I am very happy to say that I did that.

"This Rugby World Cup was always the big one for the year though and when I made it in time for Cape Town, I knew I would be ready if selected to come to New Zealand. I am very pleased that I was included and now I cannot wait. Playing in Cape Town certainly sharpened me up nicely and I am keen to give it a go."

The side will be led by lock Nolusindiso Booi who will go to her third Rugby World Cup tournament alongside Zenay Jordaan.

The Springboks face France in their opening match on Saturday, 8 October at Eden Park in Auckland.

"We experienced that hype and how to remain calm and focused," said Webb.

"Luckily, we also have the likes of Cindi (Nolusindiso Booi) and Zenay, who played in two tournaments already and they are sharing those experiences with us. I don't think the emotions will be too much, thanks to those experiences we had."

The Springboks Women will play their fourth Rugby World Cup, missing out on the previous 2017 edition.

Despite not going in with a lot of expectation, Webb backs her side to deliver competitive results in New Zealand.

"We have been playing good rugby, we have faith in each other, and we back the plans the coaches have for us," said Webb.

"I think we have a strong squad that has developed well over the last couple of months. But the most important thing for me, and the rest of the team I believe, is the desire we have to show to the world that we can play this game too. And that we belong on this stage."

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