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Welsh were robbed, say fans – of both cup teams

Sep 11th, 2011 | By | Category: Latest News, News, Sport

 

EVEN Springbok fans acknowledged their team was lucky to beat Wales 17-16 in the Rugby World Cup match in Wellington tonight.

Brother and sister Jean and Mai Andre, pictured on the front page, are visiting from South Africa for the cup and mixing sightseeing with rugby.

“It was a good game but the Welsh were a better team,” says Jean of the match at Wellington Regional Stadium.

The pair will also be seeing the England versus Argentina and Samoa versus Namibia matches.

Rhys Flowers and Glyn Richards, pictured right,  from Wales summed it up: “We were robbed 17-16. South Africa played no rugby. We are off to the bars, going to get smashed.”

Pam and Richard Sceats, pictured left, are kiwis but dressed up to support the Springboks after visiting South Africa for the Football World Cup.

“We fell in love with it,” says Pam, who found the match noisy, but good spirit.

“It was a very tight game,” says Richard.

Wayne Hurlow, who was at the match with his wife Kimberly, are from Nelson but he is originally from SA says Wales deserved to win.

“South Africa played their get out of jail free card.”

While the near-capacity stadium was pumping with fans and drowned in vuvuzela playing, Wellington’s fanzone has been hit by Sunday night fever tonight as hardly anyone turned up for the music or rugby.

The Jones family from Wellington was planning to watch the match at the fanzone on the waterfront but the weather forced them into the next best place for them – the Welsh Dragon Bar.

Pictured below are dad Richard Jones, centre, with his kiwi wife Diana, brother-in-law Sam Bowler, and Welsh-born kids Emma (12) and Joshua (14).

Mum Diana says work should be done to cover the fanzone otherwise it is pointless. “You’ve got a big screen and no cover and no one’s going to stand in the rain.”

The family members are avid rugby fans but dad Richard and Joshua (14) have to sometimes watch a game in the same room because they argue, says Diana.

Richard’s prediction of a Welsh win was off the mark, with the Springboks taking the game 17-16.

“We never say ‘lose’ in Wales, we only say ‘come second’,” he says.

An international trio of young women, in particular, are keen supporters tonight even though not one of them is Welsh.

Pictured below, from left, Fleur McCorkindale is a kiwi, Michelle Leblanc is Irish and Jen Kim is Canadian and they were busy facepainting at the Cambridge Hotel before heading to the game:

“Beware the Welsh Dragon,” said the trio, who were doing their partying before the game.

“We won’t be able to party afterwards because we have to go to work in the morning,” says Fleur.

“Hopefully there won’t be any rough and tumble tonight, I think everybody’s in pretty good spirits.”

While the city emptied out, the stadium end of the city was busy, however, as Springbok and Welsh fans poured into Wellington Regional Stadium where the Boks scored an early seven-pointer.

Both sets of fans were confident of victory as they head for Wellington’s first Rugby World Cup match tonight.

Troy O’Kane, pictured right, won tickets to the game with his depiction of the All Blacks logo on his garage and the painting caught the eye of New Zealand Rugby Union Boss Steve Tew.

The kiwi is supporting the Welsh tonight. “I’ll never support the ‘Safs’.”

Owen Hooper, from Newbridge in Wales, is staying in Lower Hutt for the whole tournament but only going tonight’s game.

“I haven’t made it down to the fanzone yet but the Wellington bars are insane. Wellington looks a bit like home with the mountains and the sea. Tonight is proper mental isn’t it. I think Wales are going to win 18-15.”

Springbok supporters, pictured left, from left, Donovan Hendricks, Scott Kimbell, Alex Grist and Peter Purdy are only over for a couple of weeks but are already taking in what New Zealand has to offer.

The group have been taking in the sights, heading to Queenstown for skiing and to the Milford Sound with the odd beer in between.

It’s still early days in the tournament but Peter is enjoying the atmosphere typical of any sports event. “Apart from the English supporters, it’s been fantastic.”

The four are confident of a Springbok win and Alex is more than happy to have a dig at the All Blacks. “New Zealand were lucky,” he said of Friday night’s win over Tonga.

South Africans, pictured right, from left, Patrik Delaney, Amy Anderson, Bruce Anderson and Jenni Anderson are brimming with pride and Bruce is predicting a 45-20 win to their team.

“I think the Boks are going to be too strong for them tonight and I see it being 45-20 in favour of South Africa of course. We’re also going to the Fiji South Africa game. If everything goes to plan then it will hopefully be a South Africa New Zealand final.”

Welsh fans Gareth Thompkins and Rodger Richardsonare looking forward to a famous victory. Gareth says after this game they are heading north to Hamilton.

“We’re we’re going to catch a couple more of the Welsh games. The plan is to head home after that, though if we look like having a good finals run we may have to reassess. I see us snatching a one point victory.

Wet weather gear is required tonight at steady rain settles in the the match.

Fortified with some of the JJ Murphy’s amber fluid and the banter of a large group of fellow Welsh supporters in Cuba Mall, Rhodri Williams, pictured above second from left, predicts Wales would thrash South Africa 32-0. Then he has second thoughts: “We’re either going to win or get thrashed. It depends if we try to play with too much flair or not.”

Further along Cuba St, Cornel Venter and Christine Burgess, pictured right, are decked out in the Springbok green and gold – his prediction is 22-18 to South Africa. “I think it will be tight. It should be alright as long as it doesn’t start to rain.”

The Metservice recommends three layers, including a windproof layer, for northerlies which are pushing the temperature down towards the nine degrees predicted tonight.

Liam Napier reports on stuff.co.nz that Australian playmaker Quade Cooper got a taste of what a jeering crown thinks of him today. All Blacks Alan Whetton and Grant Fox suggest on RugbyHeaven that his niggling of Richie McCaw could have been sorted out with a “little pop”.

Meanwhile Stuff.co.nz reports a strong second half has seen Australia surge by Italy in their group C Rugby World Cup clash at North Harbour Stadium today.

Stories and photos by Newswire team: Grant Ellen, Siena Yates, Robbie Parkes, Josh Hyde, Abby Brown and Nick Gray.

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