Rugby

Div departs with no regrets

2012-02-01 10:13
Peter de Villiers (File)
Cape Town - Peter de Villiers said farewell on Tuesday with “no regrets” about his four-year tenure as Springbok coach, as his successor Heyneke Meyer prepared to start his tenure in charge.

De Villiers, 54, will be remembered as much for his outspoken comments off the field as for his work on it, and he told Wednesday's Cape Times newspaper that he had fond memories of his time at the helm.

“I’m alright, I feel totally alright. Learnt a lot. Very good times, very, very good times. Unbelievably good! There are no regrets,” De Villiers said.

“Everything I did, I thought long and hard about. I didn’t do anything impulsively. I approached the whole thing in a calculated manner. I maybe didn’t do what the people wanted me to do, but I did what was necessary to make my job successful.

“I think we achieved many more successes than people out there can see. The first thing is that, if you walk through the country and listen to how the whole country calls you 'Coach', then it shows you that you were not just the Springboks’ coach, but the country’s coach. If you look at how many people wear the rugby jersey when they didn’t before, then you can also measure success in that.”

Asked for a farewell message to the nation, De Villiers said: “We must fight for our country, we must fight for our rights. I don’t behave like a coloured; I don’t think like a coloured; I also don’t want other people to think that they are superior and think that we think of ourselves as superior; and if we can get that right, then we have gotten a lot right.”

De Villiers confirmed that his book would be released in June. “You will have to see what type of book it is - maybe it’s a romance novel!”

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