Ireland can win the Rugby World Cup by defeating the Springboks in the championship game, according to South African rugby icon Francois Pienaar.
Listen, if you make it to the World Cup final, you can win it, without a doubt, he claimed in an interview with the Irish Mirror exclusively.
Since retiring from rugby, the 1995 World Cup champion captain has established a successful career as a leadership trainer and motivational speaker. This past week, he was in Belfast for the One Young World conference.
On Saturday, he predicted, “I think Ireland will defeat Scotland.”
The squad has a wonderful culture and a very strong core thanks to their recent 15-game winning streak. The players who touch the ball come to mind when I mention the spine.
Ireland have also edged into the favourites’ slot ahead of South Africa with the bookies, with France, New Zealand and England taking up third, fourth and fifth place respectively.
“Bookmakers, you can’t trust them!” Pienaar joked. “Before the World Cup, I called a South Africa final. There were two permutations, South Africa and Ireland or South Africa and France, but I had South Africa vs Ireland, of course.”
Pienaar says that should that scenario play out, Ireland have every chance of winning the final.
“You’ve beaten the best teams, you’re going to have some special support.”
Ireland face Scotland on Saturday (kick-off 21h00) in their final Pool B fixture. Provided France beat Italy in Pool A on Friday, Ireland are likely to face New Zealand in the quarter-finals.
After extensive negotiations with Multichoice, the SABC has just been granted sub-broadcasting rights for Rugby World Cup events. SABC Sport, in picture
This is according to acting group executive for corporate affairs and marketing at the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC), Mmoni Seapolelo.
The national broadcaster only brought in under R1 billion in money from registered licence holders during this time, according to Seapolelo, who spoke to Moneyweb about the evasion rate of 80.6% at that time.
There would be R2.9 billion in potential revenue if compliance rates were 100%.
“TV licence fees are collected to enable the SABC to fulfil its mandate as a public broadcaster. Non-payment of licence fees therefore places an enormous burden on the finances of the corporation, resulting in constraints to deliver compelling content to the country,” she said.
PAID-UP TV LICENCE HOLDERS DEALT A BLOW
Seapolelo was being queried on the SABC’s latest competition for viewers – that excludes compliant TV licence holders from entering.
In what is seen as a slap in the face to existing TV licence holders, the SABC has excluded people who renewed their licence before 1 September 2023 from entering a viewer’s competition with a prize worth a massive R300 000.
Instead, the competition is being used to entice people into renewing and paying their TV licences.
Seapolelo said the aim of the latest TV licences competition is to increase sales and brand awareness among new/potential and licence-renewal clients.
“This is the first of its kind competition for TV licences, and there are plans in progress that will benefit compliant licence holders,” she said.
The national broadcaster’s need for funds hasn’t stopped them from trying to purchase sub-broadcasting rights of Rugby World Cup games.
SABC TO BROADCAST RUGBY WORLD CUP GAMES
The SABC provided an update on the current talks between themselves and Multichoice in a statement they made on Thursday.
“The SABC can attest that the Corporation has maintained continuous contact with Multichoice and has complied with all of their conditions to reach an agreement for the Rugby World Cup 2023. The SABC is currently seeking comments from Multichoice,” it stated.
The 2023 championship game is scheduled to begin on Friday night, with South Africa’s opening match taking place on Sunday.
SuperSport initially disclosed that they had been unable to come to a deal with the SABC to televise the event on the eve of the 2023 Rugby World Cup.
However, some social media talk on Thursday hinted that a compromise was close to being reached, and the SABC may get permission to broadcast seven of the Rugby World Cup games.
It’s now been confirmed that SABC will be able to broadcast as many as 16 matches, including the opening ceremony and opening match, as well as every match that the Springboks participate in.
Furthermore, two quarter-final matches, one semi-final, the bronze final, the final and the closing ceremony will all be shown.