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Auckland family history for Claassen

 Jun 05,2013
Written by: SARugby.com Editor
 

On Saturday France loose forward Antonie Claassen will visit Eden Park, where his father captained the Springboks in the infamous 'Flour Bomb Test.'

The Castres number eight is likely to watch the first Test against New Zealand from the stands following his delayed arrival due to his involvement in the Top 14 final last weekend but it will nevertheless be a special occasion for the 28-year-old.

Claassen Snr. skippered South Africa in their 1981 series decider, which was marked by huge anti-apartheid protests and won won 25-22 by the All Blacks.

The drama happen three years before his birth in Durban but Claassen said it was "a bit of history and it's very, very special to me."

Claassen added that his father held fond memories of his time in New Zealand.

"He loved the whole thing, the whole experience about it," he told NZN.

"I know it divided the country into two camps, all the protests and everything, but they came over to play rugby, they didn't come over here with any political thoughts."

Claassen's only previous experience of New Zealand conditions came during a tour with his high school in 2001.

He is likely to feature in the second Test and says winning the French league title makes up for the disappointment of not running out at Eden Park this weekend.

"Playing the final in France and winning it was an amazing experience," he said.

"You can't ask for too much."

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Tags: International |  France |  New Zealand |  South Africa | 
 
 
 
 

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