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Rugby World Cup final: Inside South Africa’s dressing room celebrations

The trophy lift, the ticker-tape, the hand-shakes and the consoling hugs.

All very nice, but it is when you get back to the sanctuary of the dressing room that a champion team can really let their hair down.

As South Africa proved in the aftermath of their Rugby World Cup final win over England.

First, up the obligatory group shot. Eben Etzebeth’s telescopic arms would have done a better impression of a selfie stick though.

Image copyrightGETTY IMAGESSouth Africa take a group shot

Then, as the wedding photographer would ask, some more intimate group shots. The second row union of Franco Mostert, Lood de Jager, RG Snyman and Etzebeth, looking like an indie folk band on protein shakes, pose for the camera.

Image copyrightGETTY IMAGESFranco Mostert, Lood de Jager, RG Snyman and Eben Etzebeth

Meanwhile, Pieter-Steph du Toit and Duane Vermeulen review the game over a bottle of the sponsor’s best…

Image copyrightGETTY IMAGESPieter Steph du Toit and Duane Vermuelen

…and Cheslin Kolbe and Willie Le Roux send snaps of their new neckwear.

Image copyrightDAVID RAMOS – WORLD RUGBYCheslin Kolbe and Willie Le Roux send snaps of their new neckwear

What’s that? You are still thinking about that first picture? Thought you imagined Faf de Klerk in nothing but a pair of patriotic budgie smugglers? You didn’t.

Image copyrightGETTY IMAGESFaf de Klerk

Well, this is in no way awkward. The Duke of Sussex, who memorably spent the evening after the 2003 final celebrating with the victorious England players, pays a well-wishing visit to the Springboks dressing room.

Image copyrightGETTY IMAGESThe Duke of Sussex pays a congratulatory visit to the Springboks dressing room

Fortunately, Prince Harry has the small-talk smarts to smooth things over. Although does that smile look a touch forced?

Image copyrightGETTY IMAGESSiya Kolisi and Prince Harry

And he is not going to let a small thing like a complete lack of outerwear put him off the congratulatory shoulder grasp as he meets Faf de Klerk.

Image copyrightGETTY IMAGESPrince Harry and Faf de Klerk

Mbongeni Mbonambi is accessorising with some box-fresh Springbok merchandise….

Image copyrightGETTY IMAGESMbongeni Mbonambi

…as Etzebeth gets on his impressive muscle-flex flex…

Image copyrightGETTY IMAGESEben Etzebeth

But there is only one place to leave this. An image almost as enduring as Siya Kolisi’s trophy lift. Congratulations South Africa.

Image copyrightGETTY IMAGESFaf de Klerk
(BBC.co.uk)

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