Please or Register to create posts and topics.

2023 Rugby World Cup Victory Issue

After a long wait we finally have news of a new South African stamp issue celebrating our inspiring RWC (Rugby World Cup) win.

SAPO (the South African Post Office) will introduce two new South African stamps and a new official First Day Cover on 'Springboks Day', 18th January 2024, to celebrate the Bok's famous victory in the Rugby World Cup in Paris, France, on 28th October 2023. The designer of the two 'Happy Springboks Day' stamps is SAPO's Thea Clemons. This issue is a must for anyone who collects Sport as a thematic, specifically Rugby on Stamps. There are probably a few of those wherever rugby is played.

South Africa is now the first country to win four RWC competitions. This achievement is all the more remarkable for it having played two RWC competitions less than its rivals. (Apartheid barred the Springboks from playing in 1987 and 1991, the cup being won by New Zealand and Australia respectively.) In winning the RWC four times the Springboks won their last two RWC competitions back-to-back, matching a feat that only our fiercest and greatest rival, New Zealand, has done. After losing the first game of the 2023 RWC to Ireland, the Boks stayed in the fight and won all of their remaining games against four of the world's top teams.

The 2023 RWC is generally thought to be the greatest contest in the history of the competition. Notably, South Africa fielded its most racially representative Springbok team ever, every man in the team deserving to be there on merit alone, every man playing for the team and the jersey. Ther Boks hung on by a thread to beat the hosts France, (scoring 4 tries to 3) in a nail-biting ding-dong quarter final. They beat a resurgent England who found their form on the day and who took an early lead  in a hard and physical semi-final game in which the Boks scored the only try. Finally, they beat a magnificent, harshly penalised 14 man New Zealand team of heroes who scored the only try against SA's four penalty kicks. South African won all these games by just one point. That takes some doing!

According to Springbok captain Siya Kolisi, the team has shown the nation what it can do if it works together. The Springboks won praise from all quarters for their grit, determination and tenacity, in other words 'a never-say-die spirit'. Their win created a bouyant mood in troubled SA, a country where the Springbok rugby team has often been used to portray the unfair legacy of the past, Apartheid and colonialism. Julius Malema's 'the Springboks must fall speech' shows that the politics of ancient inequality and blame still resonates. Nevertheless, ever since Nelson Mandela wore the green-and gold at the first RWC triumph in 1995, the Springboks have slowly, (too slowly for some and never fast enough for Malema), re-invented themselves as an institution open to all South Africans who dare to play rugby with a warrior's heart and spirit.

The one downside to the RWC celebrations in Paris was South Africa's Prime Minister Cyril Ramaphosa car-jacking the limelight and taking the RWC Cup from captain Kolisi to hold it aloft. Just seven seconds passed between Kolisi receiving the cup and Ramaphosa taking it off him to have his politically-motivated Madiba moment. There is much wrong in South Africa today. Much of it begins and ends with an ANC government led by a spineless Prime Minister who dare not not call his corrupt cronies out. Rugby has re-invented itself in South Africa. The ANC would like to take credit for changing South African rugby and winning the RWC, yet it will not face up to its own historic failures. Rugby has shown that it can change South Africa's mood. It is time for the ANC to do the same and make the country proud, joyful and hopeful.

Anyone interested in receiving this set should contact Danie van Zyl at <>

Uploaded files:
  • Springbok-StampSheet-Home.jpg

Danie van Zyl  has taken a closer look at the new Rugby 2023 World Cup stamps.

He reports that "The stamps are self-adhesive. The cover is larger than normal namely 220 x 110 mm. If you are on my standing orders list or have already ordered, I am busy making up parcels. The first have already gone out but I have another 60 or so to make up. The Standard Postage stamps are R5.95 each or a sheetlet at R35.70 and the International Postage are R14.10 each or R84.60 a sheetlet. The First Day cover costs R26.05 and from my past experience it may become scarce. They no longer print as many FDCs as they did in years past." 

See the products Danie is supplying in the PDF file below.

Anyone interested in receiving this set should contact Danie van Zyl at <>


For what it's worth, here is the official SAPO announcement of the 18th January 2024 release of the  2023 World Rugby Champions set. Other than advice on flaws and errors which wil only appear in the fullness of time, this announcement contains all the information that future stamp collectors and postal historians will need to know about this issue when writing it up in a philatelic display.

For the record, it is worth considering why you are buying this material? Buy it because it pretty and about rugby but don't buy it because it is an investment. It is not. I have recently been going through hundreds of back issues of The South African Philatelist and The Springbok. In the early 1960s, many South Africans collectors began writing indignant letters to the editors of these philatelic publications about the huge number of FDCs (First Day Covers) that the SAPO was printing and attempting to sell via standing orders to collectors who believed their investment would one day be worth something. Unless it a special signed cover you cannot give them away today. As the rot started under the previous regime, it is gratifying to know now that SAPO after many years of following suit is now printing less of this issue than previous ones. Indeed, this is the first in a long time. "Kindly note that ther last Year Pack was issued in 2019"! (See below.) This has nothing to do with assisting and protecting South African philately but everything to do with the fact that after years of abuse and exploitation there is almost no market for this stuff any more. Worse, SAPO is no longer in the business of distributing letters and parcels.  Today it is a provider of social security payments and motor vehicle licenses. Given the decline of our hobby, there really is little appetite for collecting FDCs today unless they complement a theme or display.