This once in a lifetime opportunity was awarded to two children who were the winners of a mascot selection clinic held by Land Rover.
The lucky winners
The selection process involved a mascot clinic where a group of rugby fanatics between the ages of seven and 13 were asked to answer a series of questions about their favourite players.
A Land Rover representative and former Springbok Jean de Villiers judged the entries. The winners selected were 10-year-old Kristen Janse van Rensburg from Laarskool Garsfontein and 13-year-old Milani Pakade from Woodhill College.
The results were kept secret from the winners for weeks until Jean de Villiers surprised the unsuspecting youngsters with the big news about their upcoming trip in person. Shortly after the reveal, Milani and Kristen were chauffeured to their respective schools by De Villiers. He was driving a one-of-a-kind Range Rover Sport SVR built in the UK as a tribute to the Springboks.
Kristen, who holds Provincial Colours for athletics and tennis, is a Malcolm Marx fan because “he’s big, strong and friendly.” She’s especially excited because she has never flown on an aeroplane before.
Kristen says to the Springboks, “You can do this. Hold hands; teamwork is everything.”
Milani wants to be a professional rugby player and has already played Sevens and 15-man games at Woodhill.
He says, “I’m excited about seeing Japan’s city lights. One day I’ll tell the story of how when I was 13 Land Rover sent me to Rugby World Cup 2019.”
Why Land Rover?
Land Rover is a Worldwide Partner of Rugby World Cup 2019 and South African sponsors of the Springboks. Land Rover understands the spirit of rugby and aims to foster a love of the game – from a grassroots level to the best of the best.
Look out for Milani and Kristen on TV just before the South African matches. You can participate in the conversation by using the hashtag #DrivenBeyond.
Milani encouraged the Springboks by saying, “It doesn’t matter if you win or lose, you have made us all proud, and you’re all winners for South Africa.”