SOUTH AFRICA has launched a bespoke version of “Zombie” to celebrate its historic Rugby World Cup final win.
The groundbreaking Cranberries classic became the Irish team’s anthem throughout the World Cup season.
And although that run ended in a humiliating quarter-final exit to New Zealand, the song obviously remained in use.
The Springboks won their fourth-ever Webb Ellis Cup with a dramatic 12-11 victory over the 14-man All Blacks on Saturday evening.
After the game, in the dressing room, the players serenaded Rassie Erasmus, the team’s director of rugby, by singing “Zombie.”
However, they substituted the word “Rassie” instead of “Zombie” in the chorus.
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A clip from the performance was uploaded to X (formerly Twitter) by the Rugby World Cup account, with the caption: “Zombie: the Rassie version”.
The unique appearance sparked many conflicting reactions.
One said: “Top trolling from South Africa,” while another posted: “South Africans are petty and we always get our dick back. I love that about us.”
Someone else raged: “So classless. What’s next, a chorus of Swing Low and then a haka? You are double world champions, you are better.”
Criticism like this led one South Africa fan to tweet: “Some of the comments here are hilarious, many foreigners are under the illusion that we need their approval.”
Another Springboks supporter said: “We are a huge troll country – THE SOUTH ALWAYS REMEMBER.”
On the whole the reaction seemed magnanimous, with one saying: “Part of me feels this is a huge compliment to the Irish and their fans who have brought this tournament to life.”
Someone else boasted: “We Irish leave a good mark wherever we’ve been.”
One South African fan wrote: “Munster, thank you for lending us your song for a few weeks!”
One user pointed to Erasmus’ previous experience as Munster head coach and explained: “It may not really be because of the Munster connection – but it’s there nonetheless! (and there another Irish connection with Prince Albert of Monaco)”
Another paid tribute to Cranberries singer Dolores O’Riordan, who died in 2018, saying: “I love this! Dolores, wherever you are, you’re on everyone’s mind…”