Poor de­ci­sion-mak­ing and ex­e­cu­tion em­bar­rass­ing as ruth­less Ir­ish ex­pose SA

The Sunday Independent - - SPORT -

minute into the game tight­head Coe­nie Oosthuizen fell awk­wardly af­ter a heavy hit from Ir­ish cen­tre Bundee Aki and was carted off. It was the 28-year-old’s come­back match af­ter hav­ing bro­ken his arm in the Rugby Cham­pi­onship match against the Wal­la­bies in Perth in early Septem­ber.

It meant Wilco Louw was in ac­tion de­cid­edly sooner than planned by the coach­ing staff and while Louw pos­si­bly should have been se­lected in the first place given Oosthuizen had taken no con­tact since that arm in­jury, it di­min­ished the Boks’ planned im­pact off the bench in the sec­ond half.

Louw more than held his own in the set scrums but the Boks were twice pe­nalised for scrum in­fringe­ments in the first 10 min­utes, with Ir­ish tight­head Tadhg Fur­long get­ting the edge over Bok vet­eran Tendai Mtawarira.

Ire­land’s con­trol of the game meant penal­ties were rou­tinely con­ceded by the South Africans and by the end of the first quar­ter, Sex­ton had nailed nine points.

And the score ad­vanced to 14-0 when the Boks could not deal with a pre­ci­sion box kick and the loose ball spurted out to right wing An­drew Con­way, who sped home for a try.

The first half at least ended on a for­tu­nate note for the South Africans af­ter Ire­land failed to con­vert a penalty ad­van­tage in the Bok 22 into points. They had the penalty but stout Bok de­fence kept the visi­tors from scor­ing a try and de­prived Sex­ton of a fourth penalty goal.

And it got a touch bet­ter for the Boks when they scored the first points of the sec­ond half via a Jan­tjies penalty fol­low­ing a high tackle on Mtawarira.

But that was just about it for the Boks. The sec­ond half fight back could not ma­te­ri­alise be­cause of the ever es­ca­lat­ing er­ror and penalty count.

The Beast had been in­dus­tri­ous with his ball car­ries but it was not a sur­prise when he was the first of the start­ing line-up to be subbed, with Steven Kit­shoff in­tro­duced in the 55th minute.

Kit­shoff was on the field just long enough to see a Sex­ton penalty sail be­tween the up­rights.

At 17-3, Coet­zee’s hand was forced and Han­dre Pol­lard came on at fly­half for Jan­tjies, and De Al­lende was pulled off for Fran­cois Ven­ter.

It really did not mat­ter. It was a los­ing cause and the score-line grew de­press­ingly bad for the visi­tors when Ir­ish re­place­ment Rhys Rud­dock bus­tled over af­ter a break down the touch­line by Con­way. Sex­ton’s con­ver­sion.

And it be­came a com­plete dis­as­ter when CJ Stander scored against the coun­try of his birth, with the con­ver­sion putting the score into the 30s.

The rout was com­pleted in the 80th minute when wing Ja­cob Stock­dale scored his team’s fourth try.

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