The All Blacks have officially given up possession of the Webb Ellis Cup after eight years - but not before former captain Richie McCaw had one last touch of rugby's most coveted prize.

McCaw and Japanese skipper Michael Leitch were driven onto the pitch moments after the Springboks were crowned World Cup winners with a surprise 32-12 final victory against England in Yokohama on Saturday.

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McCaw, who retired four years ago after a career including 148 tests, carried the trophy onto the stage for World Rugby chairman Bill Beaumont to lead the presentation ceremony - and deliver the cup to South African captain Siya Kolisi.

Former New Zealand captain Richie McCaw transports the Web Ellis Cup to the trophy ceremony following the Rugby World Cup 2019 final between England and South Africa. Photo / Getty Images
Former New Zealand captain Richie McCaw transports the Web Ellis Cup to the trophy ceremony following the Rugby World Cup 2019 final between England and South Africa. Photo / Getty Images

Kolisi, who is the first black Springboks captain to lift the Webb Ellis Cup, had a stirring message to supporters of his team.

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"We have so many challenges in our country but we all came together - from different backgrounds and races... to show that we are capable of anything if we work together," Kolisi said, to rapturous applause from the packed stadium.

Siya Kolisi of South Africa lifts the Web Ellis cup following his team's victory against England. Photo / Getty Images
Siya Kolisi of South Africa lifts the Web Ellis cup following his team's victory against England. Photo / Getty Images

The Springboks now join the All Blacks as the most successful team in World Cup history with three victories.