Following the recent lifting of the Covid-19 restrictions in South Africa, the nation celebrated a double win on Saturday, beating Wales 32-29, with tickets selling out five days before the kickoff.

The scene of tens of thousands of South Africans celebrating the Boks’ win against the Welsh in-person on Saturday was a massive cause for celebration for sporting enthusiasts and event organisers. South Africa’s rugby team scored a game-changing penalty goal against Wales in the match’s final moments, where they played in front of a sold-out stadium of jubilant spectators, eking through with a 32-29 win. It is the first time that an international event of this scale has been permitted to take place in more than two years, signalling a bright end to South Africa’s lockdown restrictions.

Close to 52 000 fans celebrated the Rainbow Nation’s win against its international opponent at the Loftus Versveld stadium, with the match being a positive development for the local sports scene in South Africa as well as industries such as live events and tourism. Saturday’s match was also noted as a record-breaking one, with the largest-ever attendance for a locally-hosted South Africa versus Wales international game.

“Everywhere we go we are getting stopped by people telling us how buzzing they are that we are here… It will be massive to have the crowds back in the stand whereas last year there was nobody in the stand,” Wales flanker, Josh Navidi, commented ahead of the match.

Image credit: Vodacom Bulls

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