Sharks hail a great leader

2013-12-06 10:58
Nelson Mandela (AFP)
Durban - The Sharks have joined the rest of the rugby fraternity, South African citizens and the rest of the world in mourning the loss of Nelson Mandela, who passed away on Thursday night.

QUIZ: How well did you know Nelson Mandela?

In a press statement released on Friday, the union said:

"Madiba was the very essence of what each of us should aspire to be. His immense capacity to love, forgive and inspire a generation is some of the many great attributes he possessed.

"We can never forgot the integral role that Madiba had in transferring our nation's opinion on rugby in South Africa, what it stood for and the power it had to unite a nation."

Sharks CEO John Smit was fortunate to meet Mandela on several occasions throughout his playing career and shared a special relationship with him.

Commenting on their relationship, Smit said: "I first met Madiba before my first Test match in 2000 and I was more nervous about meeting the great man than making my Springbok debut. He saw that, smiled and embraced me. He made it just so easy to speak to him.

"For me as a player, the moments I had with him on a one-on-one basis and from a team perspective is something I will cherish forever."

Smit added: "He was loved by the world because of his leadership and ability to connect with people from all walks of life. This is what we will all miss the most but remember the best."

Read more on:    sharks  |  john smit  |  nelson mandela  |  durban  |  rugby

What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


With the Absa Premiership in full swing, who will be crowned champions when all is said and done? Will Mamelodi Sundowns defend their title? Or can Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates or Bidvest Wits mount a serious challenge? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

SA Rugby's coaching indaba is set to take place this week. Do you think the two-day think-tank will make any difference?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.