A couple of spectators were spotted wearing the limited number (350) of the mostly-yellow Madiba-inspired jerseys ASICS made available for the public to buy for the HSBC Sevens tournament in Cape Town this weekend – in between the fancy dresses, face paint and masks that add atmosphere to these tournaments.

There were plenty of green jerseys in the crowd – unfortunately not many Sevens replica.

The fans that packed the stands when the Blitzbokke played showed their ‘Bok support by donning their solid green Springbok supporters’ jerseys, but as many retailers will confirm, they don’t necessarily buy the latest tournament replica. In a snap survey of 30 people wearing Springbok replica in the V&A Waterfront, twenty were wearing Springbok fifteen jerseys with the Canterbury logo from more than four years ago, and only four wore the ordinary green Sevens replica.

Blitzbok captain Philip Snyman in the Madiba-inspired jersey against Zimbabwe.

The Blitzbokke enjoyed the power of Madiba-magic on their way to the bronze medal this weekend … but is was unfortunately not enough to secure gold. They played in the special jerseys from ASICS as part of their centenary celebrations of Madiba’s life.

Branco du Preez scores against the All Blacks.

Our late president, who would have been 100 years old this year, was well known for his vibrant and unique Madiba shirts, and the rugby jersey from ASICS clearly draws inspiration from them. The design incorporates elements such as the protea and Springbok in green, gold and touches of white.

Impi Visser scores against Samoa.

“The entire country celebrated the life of Mr Nelson Mandela this year and we’re honoured to also have an opportunity to pay our respects in this specially designed Madiba jersey,” says Philip Snyman, captain of the Blitzboks.

Siviwe Soyizwapi behind the try line.
Rosko Specman on his way to score and below Justin Geduld converts.