“This Team Is Growing Into Something Special” – Libbie Janse van Rensburg

 

It is great to know that she became the first Springbok Women's player to achieve 100 Test points, but Libbie Janse van Rensburg would rather be rated by her contribution to the squad and the growth of the team over time because of it.

The 28-year-old pivot slotted two conversions and a penalty goal against Fiji in the Waitakere Stadium in Auckland on Sunday, with her 78th-minute three-pointer pushing the Springbok Women into a 17-14 lead with time running out on the clock.

Unfortunately for the South Africans though, Fiji managed to regain the restart and with a last-gasp attack, broke through to score the winning points and deny the Springbok Women their first win of the Rugby World Cup in New Zealand.

“Yes, that was heart-breaking, but one learns from these things,” said Janse van Rensburg afterwards.

“We really thought we pipped them, but they managed to score the try, so the win slipped away. We are learning and improving all the time and will be better next time we are in a similar position.

“I really believe this team is growing into something special and to be part of it means a lot to me.”

To achieve 100 Test points in only 12 internationals is a reflection of Janse van Rensburg’s contribution since making her debut against Kenya in Stellenbosch last year, but the Bulls player is adamant that personal achievements play second fiddle in this regard.

“It was great to have nailed that penalty to put us ahead for the first time, the squad really put a lot of trust in me when they called me up to take the kick,” she said.

“I did not think it was the greatest angle for me and the crowd was quite noisy while I went through my routine. But the trust the team showed me made me determined to kick that penalty. I want this team to do well, we have improved so much this year.”

“We did our reviews, we did not always execute, as Fiji managed to put us under a lot of pressure,” said Janse van Rensburg.

“But now the next challenge awaits, and they do not come bigger than England. We said we wanted to play the best teams in the world to grow. So now we are playing the best, this is what we wanted.”