ADVERTISEMENT
RugbyDump
REGISTER
LOGIN
ADVERTISEMENT
RugbyDump
Friday Apr 16, 2021

'It's part of our culture' says Haka performing South African university team

The latest footage of a South African university team performing a pre-match Haka has caused somewhat of a mixed reaction online, with some citing “cultural appropriation”.  The Walter Sisulu University captain has now explained the motivation behind it. 

ADVERTISEMENT

Just before kick-off in their FNB Varsity Shield matches, the university have taken to performing a Haka that is almost an exact replica of what the All Blacks perform. They did it again on Monday before facing the Durban University of Technology.

While there are many versions of Haka’s in New Zealand, and the Pacific Islands, the Ka Mate and Kapa o Pango are unique to the national team, the All Blacks.

So why is this South African university side, WSU, performing it? Captain Litha Nkula spoke to VarsityCup.co.za to explain why.

“When I arrived at WSU, our late coach Sipho Metula told us stories about how this team got to mobilise and use New Zealand rugby players as icons within the team,” he explained.

WATCH: A hooker is making serious waves at a Varsity competition with his lethal speed

With many of the players admiring the All Blacks since the 2015 Rugby World Cup win, a former player suggested that they perform a haka to motivate the team, but it was initially just done as a post-match celebration.

“The players wanted to bring in the haka because they admired the way the All Blacks play. The players took the initiative to try and understand why the All Blacks do it.

“We chose the haka because of the style of rugby that we play. We hold ourselves to the standard of New Zealand rugby, we want to play like them. The haka entertains us but also brings that seriousness before a game.

ADVERTISEMENT

“It has become part of our culture. We explain to new players that come in why it is done and how it influences us as a team. That’s why we feel that we can’t play without it; it’s part of our team culture, even though we adopted it from New Zealand.”

Nkula says there is no disrespect intended.

“We’re doing it in a respectful manner and trying to bring confidence to our players. We would have done something else but because of the way that it has influenced us as a team, it’s not something we want to change.

ADVERTISEMENT

“We do listen to what people out there say, but we don’t see ourselves stopping the haka unless New Zealand says it’s disrespectful.”

While many online have suggested that it’s comical that they do that instead of an actual traditional South African war dance, Nkula says they do have their own elements from their own culture.

“It’s not that we don’t do anything from our traditions or cultures; we also sing Amagwijo before a game, during practice, and on our way to the game. The haka is just influential to us.”

This week a New Zealand Rugby spokesman told Newshub that despite its intellectual property being imitated, as long as the haka is performed with respect and understanding, there is no issue.

Related Articles

  • 8 WEEKS AGO

    WATCH: Brilliant footage shows old school...

  • 8 WEEKS AGO

    Crazy scenes as player deliberately kicks...

  • 9 WEEKS AGO

    Jokester has field day with Chris Latham's...



ADVERTISEMENT

Great Tries

  • 3 DAYS AGO

    Carlos Spencer Proves Why He Is Rugby's Greatest Ever Magician

  • 6 WEEKS AGO

    Jero De La Fuente pulls Hamstring and uses it to score incredible try

  • 6 WEEKS AGO

    Waisale Serevi: The greatest sevens player ever

  • 6 WEEKS AGO

    David Campese: The Aussie all time great

  • 6 WEEKS AGO

    The man who once raced a Cheetah: Bryan Habana

View All

Big Hits & Dirty Play

  • 20 HOURS AGO

    Springbok Fans Left Reeling At Officiating Despite Convincing Win

  • 21 HOURS AGO

    Bundee Aki Shown Red Following Ludicrous Challenge

  • 6 DAYS AGO

    The Latest Tuilagi Has Just Made His Top14 Debut And Is A MONSTER

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    Wallabies Locked Sinbinned For 'Disgraceful' Act

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    Marika Koroibete Smashes Caleb Clarke Into Next Week With Huge Hit

View All

See It To Believe It

  • 3 DAYS AGO

    Carlos Spencer Proves Why He Is Rugby's Greatest Ever Magician

  • 4 DAYS AGO

    Worcester name 41-year-old academy coach in tonight's premiership cup clash

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    Crazy refereeing decision leads to All Blacks win

  • 3 WEEKS AGO

    Speculation rife after apparent handshake snub in All Blacks coaching box

  • 3 WEEKS AGO

    Emotional scenes as parents in shock to see daughter leading Haka

View All

Funnies

  • 1 DAY AGO

    John Smit Shares Epic Bakkies Botha Story Highlighting Why Opponents Feared Him

  • 5 DAYS AGO

    Heart-warming drop goal competition between Foster and Reece goes viral

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    Hilarious Streaker Tries To Distract Sharp Shooting Goal Kicker

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    Throwback To The Wildest Conversion In Rugby History

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    "I'd Beat Him" Quade Cooper Speaks Out On Potential Jake Paul Fight

View All

Amateur

  • 8 WEEKS AGO

    Dubious Score Decides Result Of Rugby's Biggest Schools Fixture

  • 8 WEEKS AGO

    Incredible Scenes At School Boys Rugby Match

  • 8 WEEKS AGO

    The Next Dominant Backrow?

  • 9 WEEKS AGO

    Hilarious Club House Antics Shows Rugby Spirit

  • 14 WEEKS AGO

    WATCH: South African Schools Rugby Is On Fire

View All

Player Features

  • 1 DAY AGO

    Joe Simmonds addresses lack of form in honest interview

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    Rugby great Eddie Butler sadly passes away

  • 2 WEEKS AGO

    Graham Rowntree reacts to missing out on 2003 world cup in fascinating video

  • 2 WEEKS AGO

    Official: Christian Wade signs for French club

  • 3 WEEKS AGO

    Etzebeth proves to be rugby's biggest thug once again

View All