Springboks' ice bucket challenge for All Blacks

DUNCAN JOHNSTONE
Last updated 10:28 22/08/2014
Jacaranda FM

All Blacks and Wallabies getting the ice bucket challenge from ill Springboks star.

Joost van der Westhuizen
Reuters
SPRINGBOKS GREAT: Joost van der Westhuizen in action during the 1999 Rugby World Cup was a fierce competitor against the All Blacks.

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The All Blacks and Wallabies have had extra pressure piled on them before tomorrow's Bledisloe Cup test with embattled Springboks great Joost van der Westhuizen asking them to take on the latest celebrity craze, the "ice bucket challenge".

The challenge, which raises funds for motor neuron disease - something van der Westhuizen suffers from, sees stars soaked in ice-cold water and is spreading around the world.

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It has swamped the entertainment and sporting world with participants including Oprah Winfrey, Ben Affleck, Simon Cowell, Lady Gaga, Cristiano Ronaldo, Sergio Garcia, Jose Mourinho, Luiz Suarez, Ana Ivanovic, David Beckham, and the Manchester United team.

After their dousing, they immediately pass on the challenge.

It is believed to have started in United States, conceived by Pat Quinn, who was diagnosed with the disease in March last year. Quinn dared family and friends who then posted their videos on social media. It has since gone viral with celebrities joining.

If a nomination is accepted and completed within 24 hours, the participant donates $10. But if the challenge is refused a nominee must donate $100 towards MND.

Van der Westhuizen's challenge is especially poignant after he was diagnosed with MND in 2011. He can no longer walk, bathe or feed himself.

Van der Westhuizemn, the halfback who played 89 tests for the Boks from 1993-2003 and won the World Cup in 1995, is now confined to a wheelchair.

He looked frail as he took the ice bucket challenge from a Pretoria radio station where a caller had nominated him. The 43-year-old wore goggles, a snorkel and flippers as he sat in a chair, held steady by two assistants.

He smiled afterwards and his challenge went out to the All Blacks and Wallabies who play at Eden Park tomorrow night, and the Springboks who play an away test against Argentina this weekend.

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