Read the book that inspired the Academy Award and Golden Globe winning 2009. INVICTUS featuring Morgan Freeman and Matt Damon, directed by Clint Eastwood.

Author John Carlin

Rugby World Cup 1995. The Author, John Carlin is a British journalist and author. His book Playing the Enemy is the basis for the 2009 film Invictus. It cover the story behind the 1995 RWC and the involvement of the South African president Nelson Mandela.

He was born to a Spanish mother and Scottish father. And spent the first three years of his life in North London, before moving to Buenos Aires, Argentina, due to his father’s posting to the British Embassy.

Much of Carlin’s career has dealt with the politics of South Africa. In a 1998 interview, Mandela said of Carlin’s journalism: “What you wrote and the way in which you carried out your task in this country was absolutely magnificent…it was absolutely inspiring. You have been very courageous, saying things which many journalists would never say.”

Here’s the Rugby World Cup 1995. Playing the Enemy. Invictus. Book Preview –

Beginning in a jail cell and ending in a rugby tournament. This is the true story of how the most inspiring charm offensive in history brought South Africa together. After being released from prison and winning South Africa’s first free election. Nelson Mandela presided over a country still deeply divided by fifty years of apartheid.

His plan was ambitious if not far-fetched. It was to use the national rugby team, the Springboks-long a white-supremacist organisation. He combined with the Rugby team to engage a new South Africa as they prepared to host the 1995 World Cup. The string of wins that followed not only defied the odds. But capped Mandela’s miraculous effort to bring South Africans together again in a hard-won, enduring bond.

Rugby World Cup 1995

As the day of the final of the 1995 Rugby World Cup dawned, and the Springboks faced New Zealand’s all-conquering All Blacks, more was at stake than a sporting trophy. When Nelson Mandela appeared wearing a Springboks jersey and led the all-white Afrikaner-dominated team in singing South Africa’s new national anthem, he conquered the hearts of white South Africa.

Playing the Enemy tells the extraordinary human story of how that moment became possible. It shows how a sport, once the preserve of South Africa’s Afrikaans-speaking minority, came to unify the new rainbow nation, and tells of how – just occasionally – something as simple as a game really can help people to rise above themselves and see beyond their differences.

It was Man in the Arena poem – not Invictus

Invictus refers to the title of a poem by British poet William Ernest Henley. Although Nelson Mandela did take solace from the poem. He would read during his captivity on Robben Island. It was Theodore Roosevelt’s speech ‘Man in the Arena’ that he gave to François Pienaar. He gave it to Pienaar to help him motivate the South Africa Rugby Union team during the tournament.

What the Press say about 1995 Rugby World Cup. Playing the Enemy. Invictus.

“This wonderful book describes Mandela’s methodical, improbable and brilliant campaign to reconcile resentful blacks and fearful whites around a sporting event, a game of rugby.” —The New York Times Book Review

“If you have any doubts about the political genius of Nelson Mandela, read John Carlin’s engrossing book . . .  feel-good slice of history.” —USA Today

Where to buy?

Available from Amazon to VIEW. Also, why not take a look at our 1995 Rugby World Cup Mandela Pienaar Polo. Or France Rugby League T-Shirt Vintage Style. Also, we offer Invictus Rugby World Cup T-Shirt Vintage.