Cape Town - Former Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer has heaped praise of Joost van der Westhuizen, calling the former No 9 a "warrior and a fighter".
"I knew Joost most of his life because when I was a young teacher at FH Odendaal he was at school there. There are so many things you can say about Joost but the one thing that I keep coming back to is that both as a player and person he was a warrior and a fighter. It was very sad to see him physically go backwards but he never lost that fighting spirit," Meyer was quoted as saying by AFP.
Van der Westhuizen passed away on Monday aged 45, after losing his nearly six-year long battle with motor neuron disease (MND).
Van der Westhuizen, who was diagnosed with the illness 2011, played 89 Tests for the Springboks between 1993 and 2003.
He scored a then-Springbok record 38 tries and is widely regarded as one of the game’s finest-ever scrumhalves.