Arugby feat that remained unachieved for 124 years was – almost unnoticed – entered into the sporting annals along with Argentina’s shock 37-25 victory over the Springboks at Kings Park in Durban last weekend.
The new mark will be written alongside the name of Pumas left wing Juan Imhoff, who crossed for three tries to register the first hattrick against South Africa since the start of international competition in 1891.
More than 30 players have scored two tries against the Boks, but it has taken that long for an individual to get the triple – aptly underscoring a historic day for Argentinian rugby.
In what was a case of the student becoming the master, Los Pumas were deserving winners for the first time in 20 matches since the two nations started playing official tests in 1993.
Before readmission, following the antiapartheid sports ban, South Africa did not play official tests against Argentina and, through the ministrations of Dr Danie Craven, were seen as the godfathers of rugby on the pampas.
In the early 1960s, Craven sent the respected and innovative Izak van Heerden to Argentina to help with that country’s development – and his work resulted in such improvement that rugby officials instigated the next step up the ladder of international competition.
In 1965, a tour to South Africa was arranged