ANDRE VENTER

Andre Venter came into the Springbok side in 1996 and has proved himself one of the most consistent players in the side who rarely has an off-day. He is considered by many experts to be one of the best flank forwards in the world.

Although he was brought up as a Christian he never had that peace of God in his heart. Then one Sunday he heard the preacher ask the question, If you had to die tonight where would you go: Heaven or Hell?

That night I gave my heart to the Lord and from then on I experienced His peace in my life. There are still problems and obstacles but the difference is now that I know that God is there to pick me up when I fall and now I am never alone. He would never again be alone for now he had joined God's team.

The whole direction and focus of my life was changed. Now I know that win or lose I am always on the winning side.

Before internationals when the opponents anthem is being played, Andre is conspicuous by having his eyes tightly shut. I always pray during the singing of the anthems. It helps me to relax and calms me down. When the South African anthem is being played I keep my eyes shut as part of the anthem is also a prayer. His goal in life is clear. I am on earth to serve Christ. Rugby is only a way in which I can live out my Christian faith.
 
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