Madiba to be honoured at PE Sevens

Fri, 06 Dec 2013 18:07
Large nelsonmandela Large nelson mandela bay stadium Large nelson mandela bay stadium2

This weekend the world of rugby will unite in paying tribute to the former South African President Nelson Mandela in the stadium that bears his name.

Following the sad news of the passing of Nelson Mandela, this weekend the world of rugby will unite in paying tribute to the former South African President in the stadium that bears his name.

South Africa and 15 other international teams are set to compete in the Nelson Mandela Bay South Africa Sevens, round three of the IRB Sevens World Series, at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in Port Elizabeth this weekend.

A moment's silence will be observed before South Africa's first match in the tournament, against Canada at 13.12 South African time.

Later in the day, at 17.02 local time, all 16 teams will join together on the pitch, wearing black armbands, for the playing of the South African national anthem, followed by a minute's silence.

IRB chairman Bernard Lapasset said: “Mr Mandela was a truly remarkable man. I was honoured to be with him during the historic days of Rugby World Cup 1995 and saw his incredible impact on his nation and his people. His wisdom, intelligence and sheer presence was a wonder to behold.

“I am so proud that the rugby family could play its small part in supporting Mr Mandela's efforts to establish the new South Africa and that our tournament came to symbolise the emergence of a new nation. He changed the world and we were privileged to witness and embrace his work.”

IRB Sevens tournament director Beth Coalter said: “It is extremely humbling to be here in South Africa at this time. For these international players it will be a huge privilege to turn out for their countries this weekend and honour the memory of Nelson Mandela in this beautiful stadium named after him.”

On the eve of the tournament in Port Elizabeth, all 16 international coaches have declared their final squads of 12.

South African forward Frankie Horne passed a late fitness to make Neil Powell's squad, but England have been forced to make a last-minute change with the injured Mike Ellery replaced by John Brake.

In all, there are 17 changes from Dubai last weekend and 12 debutants in Port Elizabeth, five of whom line up for Zimbabwe.

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Sat, 06 February 2016
Harlequins v Northampton Saints 14h00 Twickenham Stoop
Wasps v Newcastle Falcons 14h00 Ricoh Arena
France v Italy 14h25 Paris
Leicester Tigers v Sale Sharks 15h00 Welford Road
Scotland v England 16h50 Edinburgh
Sun, 07 February 2016
London Irish v Worcester Warriors 13h00 Madejski Stadium
Exeter Chiefs v Saracens 13h00 Sandy Park
Ireland v Wales 15h00 Dublin
Mon, 08 February 2016
UP-Tuks v NWU-Pukke 14h45 Pretoria
UWC v UKZN-Impi 16h30 Cape Town
Wits v TUT 16h30 Johannesburg
UJ v NMMU-Madibaz 16h30 Johannesburg
Maties v CUT-Ixias 16h30 Stellenbosch
UCT-Ikeys v Shimlas 17h00 Cape Town
Fri, 12 February 2016
Leinster v Zebre 22h00 RDS Arena
Treviso v Cardiff Blues 22h00 Stadio Comunale di Monigo
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