The 2015 rugby season has drawn to a close, and it would seem this week that it ended on a sad and epic note. One of rugby’s greats, Jonah Lomu, passed away unexpectedly on the 18th of November at the age of 40.
Lomu was known by one and all as an unconquerable spirit and even after the eight years he ran out onto the field for his country, he still remained the iconic rugby hero for many a young man and woman across the world.
Before his death, Lomu met with Joost van der Westhuizen to show solidarity for the fellow rugby player’s disease – as Lomu himself had been battling a rare kidney disease for several years and was awaiting another kidney transplant before his death.
He leaves a remarkable legacy for the sport of rugby and will be remembered with great pride and admiration.
A tribute to an icon
Sports greats from all over the world voiced their heartbreak over the death of the icon on social media. South African tributes included the likes of Bryan Habana, John Smith, Joost van der Westhuizen and Chester Williams.
The resounding opinion, however, is that Lomu will have wanted others to continue growing the game and getting youngsters involved in the sport to uplift them. Lomu quoted the sport (and his mother) as the main forces diverting him from a life of crime in the street gangs of Auckland.
The game must go on
Although heads remain bowed, the game must go on. Springboks are grateful for a bit of a reprieve for a few months as they prepare for the 2016 season. For now, it’s the Proteas’ turn as they are still battling India and will start the series against England in December. But first, they will face the Springboks in the friendly Nelson Mandela Legacy Cup T20 on 5 December in Nelson Mandela Bay.
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