Picture: Supplied

Cape Town - A 12-year-old Southfield boy has won a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be part of the Rugby World Cup.

Aidan Smith was selected to be the ball carrier at the much-anticipated Rugby World Cup opening match between the Springboks and the All Blacks in Japan on Saturday.

Aidan was shortlisted out of hundreds of entries in a DHL Africa competition on Twitter after his father Thomas Smith, 42, entered and told them why his only son deserves to run out for the Bokke.

Aidan is in Grade 6 at Fairview Primary, and Thomas said they had been waiting anxiously since April to hear if he’d made the team and was over the moon when they received the good news at the end of May.

Aidan will be the only child from South Africa to represent the country as a ball carrier.

He and other kids from around the world were selected to deliver the match ball at the pool games during RWC 2019.

His proud dad Thomas said: “Aiden is a huge fan of rugby and I felt this was a once in a lifetime opportunity, we didn’t tell him immediately when we got the good news.

“We held a family lunch on Sunday to announce it to him and also gave him a Springbok cap and T-shirt to take with him.”

Dad Thomas entered the competition on his son’s behalf. Picture: Supplied

Thomas said in his application about his son: “Aidan is an avid Springbok supporter, he lives for rugby and this opportunity would mean the world to my son.”

DHL Africa announced his win on their Twitter page after he was chosen from 10 shortlisted boys and girls.

“I’m very proud of my son for making history for South Africa and I’m sure he’s never going to forget this event,” says Thomas.

Aiden used to play rugby for his school last year but set his sights on music this year.

“I’m very excited about this opportunity, it’s amazing, I can’t wait to see the Springboks in action, I predict the score will be 40-20. I love rugby a lot and I want to get back into it next year.”

Aidan Smith, 12, from Southfield and his mother Kim. Picture: Supplied

Thomas said unfortunately only one adult can accompany Aidan and his wife Kim, 39, will be joining their son on the all-expenses-paid trip.

“Aidan chose his mom to go with him. I was overseas twice already and I thought mommy would like it because she’s never travelled before,” Thomas said.

The pair will leave for Japan on Thursday and return on Monday.

DHL Africa’s Jared Kisten congratulated Aidan and said 300 entries were received for the competition.

Daily Voice