Johannesburg - Cricket South Africa (CSA) and the Proteas have united behind the Springboks, who departed for New Zealand last night, to defend their Rugby World Cup crown. CSA hosted a brunch for its head office staff on Friday, September 2 in celebration of BOK Friday. CSA CEO Gerald Majola handed supporter shirts to staff and encouraged them to wear the green and gold in support of the Springboks during the world rugby showpiece.“CSA and the Proteas wish the Springboks all the best as they prepare to defend their Rugby World Cup crown. We are all passionate rugby supporters and are firmly united behind our national team.“As a sporting body, we appreciated the support from other federations during the 2011 Cricket World Cup. As CSA, we encourage all sporting federations to support the Springboks in their pursuit of Rugby World Cup glory.”The Proteas were not able to attend the Springboks Fans Farewell at Nelson Mandela Square on Thursday, due to pre-season training, but they are avid rugby supporters and are backing the Boks all the way. Robin Peterson, one of the stars of the Cricket World Cup said: “Sport has been an incredible bind that has brought our nation closer together. Soccer, cricket and now rugby have gone a long way in spurring national pride amongst our people. I’m wishing the Boks all of the best, and I have no doubt that they will raise the flag high at the tournament.” Graeme Smith also echoed the same words: “The Springboks united behind us before the 2011 Cricket World Cup and now, the Proteas will also be rallying behind them. South Africa is an incredible sporting nation and the support from the public as well as other sporting bodies goes a long way.”JP Duminy said: “I am a big rugby fan and also very good mates will a lot of the rugby players so I will definitely be following the Springboks at the World Cup. Every South African needs to unite behind the national team like they did for the 2010 Soccer World Cup and for us during the Cricket World Cup.” Lonwabo Tsotsobe urged South Africans to don their green and gold jerseys. “We are 100% behind the Boks. I will be wearing my green and gold jersey in support of the team.”The Rugby World Cup takes place in New Zealand from September 9 and the Springboks play their first pool match against Wales in Wellington on September 11.