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Heineken SA makes a rugby fan's dream come true

There have been many inspirational sporting moments in this year's Rugby World Cup. However, one that comes off the field is that of 18-year-old Qaphela Gobodo from Paarl in the Western Cape.
Heineken SA makes a rugby fan's dream come true

Qaphela is travelling outside of the Western Cape for the first time to Japan as a guest of Heineken South Africa on an all-expense-paid trip where he will watch a game he is passionate about and has played for most of his young life.

At the age of 15, Qaphela was awarded a scholarship for his prowess on the rugby field. However, his burgeoning career as a rugby player came to a devastating halt when his schoolmates allegedly set him alight at school. Qaphela survived the gruesome attack, and after 20 surgeries to repair his third-degree burn wounds, he is back to playing rugby and has found his calling as a motivational speaker.

Heineken South Africa came to know of the young man’s plight from social media, where a good Samaritan, Ms Nthabeleng Likotsi, was raising awareness about his story and lobbying for donations to make “a rugby related dream” come true.

“Qaphela’s story really inspired us; this young man has experienced much adversity, but refuses to give up or let his circumstances get him down,” says Millicent Maroga, Corporate Affairs Director at Heineken SA.

“He might not be on the field in this Rugby World Cup, but we hope the opportunity to watch his rugby heroes battle it out on the sport’s biggest stage will inspire him to have the courage to pursue his ambitions,” says Maroga.

Qaphela will watch the semi-finals where the strong Springboks take on Wales, and the epic battle between New Zealand and England.

A long-standing partnership

Heineken®, the world’s most premium beer, is the worldwide partner for Rugby World Cup 2019 in Japan, and also covered Women’s Rugby World Cup 2017. Heineken® has enjoyed a close association with rugby for over 20 years. This partnership compliments Heineken®’s other unique global platforms; Formula One, UEFA Champions League and James Bond.

In South Africa, the brewing giant launched #TeamHeineken Experience, an interactive activation set to thrill rugby and non-rugby fans. The activation was unveiled at the Rosebank Mall in Johannesburg, demonstrating that everyone can enjoy the spirit of the tournament, whether they know the rules of the game or not.

The #TeamHeineken Experience blends Heineken®’s premium beer with cutting-edge technology, including an augmented reality experience that transports consumers to the host country - Japan. There are also opportunities to win Heineken® and Rugby World Cup 2019 merchandise.

Fans can also get a taste of the alcohol-free Heineken® 0.0 from the revolutionary Heineken® Blade draught system and stand a chance to receive a limited-edition personalised Heineken® Rugby World Cup 2019™ bottle.

The #TeamHeineken Experience activation is free of charge to anyone of legal drinking age in South Africa. Doors open 10h00 to 18h00 daily for the duration of Rugby World Cup 2019.

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22 Oct 2019 16:34