Tendai ‘The Beast’ Mtawarira has been named as one of the best fifteen rugby players of the decade. The Zimbabwean-born player who won the rugby world cup with the South African senior team was announced as part of the Rugby Team Of The Decade.
The World Rugby Awards Special Edition announced a team of 15 brilliant rugby players that includes the likes of former Australian captain David Pocock who is also a Zimbabwean by birth and former All Blacks captain Richie McCaw.
The announcement was made on Twitter.
Mtawarira’s heroics were at the heart of the Springboks’ World Rugby World Cup success story in Yokohama, Japan, last year in which South Africa powered to a 32-12 win over England in the final to claim their third World Cup crown. He retired from Test rugby after the world cup after having played a record 117 test matches scoring 5 tries along the way.
Two other Boks, Bismarck du Plessis and Bryan Habana, also made the cut to reaffirm South Africa’s giants’ status in world rugby.
After the announcement, The Beast took to Instagram to show his gratitude.
The Beast was born in Zimbabwe and attended Churchill and Peterhouse schools.
The awards evening celebrated members of the rugby family who have provided outstanding service during the Covid-19 pandemic as well as players and teams who have starred over the last decade in a virtual show.
And yesterday the Zimbabwe Rugby Union led in celebrating “The Beast’s” milestone achievement with the association’s chief executive, Sifiso Made, saying the feat is confirmation of the strong development structures within ZRU.
“Yes, this is a milestone not only for Mtawarira, but for Zimbabwe Rugby as well. He is a product of our development structures and we can only walk with a spring in our step after this special award to one of our products,” said Made.
“This is a great achievement in terms of both fame and fortune. But most importantly, it speaks volumes of the amount of talent that Zimbabwe possesses. If we can have someone from Zimbabwe, who was nurtured in the structures we have in Zimbabwe, dazzling the world, then we can never stop dreaming. Besides, the youngsters who we have in the structures will be more than inspired. This is no mean feat.”
Below is the list of the Men’s Rugby 15s Team of the decade.
Ben Smith (NZL), George North (WAL), Brian O’Driscoll (IRL), Ma’a Nonu (NZL), Bryan Habana (RSA) Dan Carter (NZL), Conor Murray (IRL), Sergio Parisse (ITA), Richie McCaw (NZL), David Pocock (AUS); Sam Whitelock (NZL), Brodie Retallick (NZL), Owen Franks (NZL), Bismarck du Plessis (RSA), Tendai Mtawarira (RSA).