Sunday Times

Now for the All Blacks

Boks warm up for Lof­tus with win over the Wal­la­bies

- By GE­ORGE BYRON at Nel­son Man­dela Bay Sta­dium Sports · Rugby · New Zealand national rugby union team · Australia · South Africa · Francois de Klerk · South Africa national rugby union team · Championship · New Zealand · Japan · Nelson Mandela · Australia national rugby union team · Siyamthanda Kolisi · Will Genia · Matt Toomua · Australia national football team · Nelson · Rassie Erasmus · Aphiwe Dyantyi

SA (20) 23 Aus­tralia (12) 12

South Africa — Tries: Aphiwe Dyan­tyi, Faf de Klerk; Con­ver­sion: Han­dre Pol­lard (2); Penalty: Han­dre Pol­lard (3)

Aus­tralia — Tries: Reece Hodge, Will Ge­nia; Con­ver­sion: Matt Toomua;

● It was billed as the “Bat­tle of the Bay” and it was the Spring­boks who de­liv­ered the knock­out blow which put a brave Aus­tralian team out for the count in front of 41,300 blood­thirsty fans.

Af­ter their heroic Rugby Cham­pi­onship win over New Zealand, the Boks scrapped their way to a hard-earned win.

Both teams were out on their feet when the hooter sounded to sig­nal the end of an ab­sorb­ing show­down be­tween two of rugby’s old­est ri­vals.

Sud­denly South Africans are look­ing for­ward to next year’s World Cup in Japan be­cause this is a Bok team on an up­ward tra­jec­tory.

It was a de­feat that piled more mis­ery on Aus­tralia, who are bot­tom of the ta­ble with just a sin­gle win to their name af­ter five rounds.

The vic­tory en­abled SA to stretch their un­beaten run at Nel­son Man­dela Bay Sta­dium to six matches and con­sol­i­date the venue’s rep­u­ta­tion as be­ing a fortress for the Boks.

Ahead of the clash Bok coach Rassie Eras­mus warned Aus­tralia were a dan­ger­ous team and that his men would have to main­tain their in­ten­sity if they wanted to get over the line.

The Boks have blown hot and cold this sea­son, but con­sec­u­tive wins over New Zealand and Aus­tralia are good omens.

It was the Boks who struck first af­ter half­time when cool-head Han­dre Pol­lard struck his third penalty to stretch his team’s lead to 23-12 af­ter 45 min­utes.

Aus­tralia then en­joyed their best spell of the match, and the Boks were forced to build a brick-wall de­fence to hold them at bay.

The Boks were down to 14 men in the 64th minute when wing Aphiwe Dyan­tyi was sent to the naughty chair by ref­eree Jerome Garces.

It was all hands on deck then for the Boks as they fought to hold onto their 11-point ad­van­tage.

SA took just 30 sec­onds to get on the score­board when livewire wing Dyan­tyi in­ter­cepted a loose pass from Kurt­ley Beale to dive over and give his team a dream start.

The Boks could not have wished for a bet­ter launch­ing pad against an Aus­tralian side who en­tered the game low on con­fi­dence.

Af­ter their fast start the Boks took the fight to the Wal­la­bies, who were pinned in­side their own half and forced to de­fend.

Bok skip­per Siya Kolisi had the home

Af­ter their fast start the Boks took the fight to the Wal­la­bies

crowd on their feet when he went on a storm­ing run down the touch­line be­fore he was dragged down by the Wal­laby de­fence.

The Boks had to wait un­til the 20th minute for their sec­ond try when pock­etrocket scrumhalf Faf de Klerk went in un­der the posts to put his team into a healthy 14-0 lead.

This stung the Wal­la­bies into ac­tion and their dan­ger­ous back­line were sud­denly prob­ing the Bok de­fence for open­ings.

The pres­sure paid off when Reece Hodge squeezed in at the cor­ner af­ter evad­ing the Bok de­fence to nar­row the Bok lead to 14-5 af­ter 25 min­utes.

It was the Aus­tralians who were on the front foot now and Will Ge­nia raced in for his team’s sec­ond try af­ter 29 min­utes.

That left the Boks with a 14-12 lead and the Wal­la­bies were sud­denly back in the con­test.

With the first half wind­ing down, Pol­lard kicked two penal­ties for the Boks to put some day­light be­tween the sides.

 ?? Pic­ture: Siphiwe Sibeko/Reuters ?? Spring­bok cap­tain Siya Kolisi is tack­led by Aus­tralia’s Marika Koroi­bete in yes­ter­day’s Test match.
Pic­ture: Siphiwe Sibeko/Reuters Spring­bok cap­tain Siya Kolisi is tack­led by Aus­tralia’s Marika Koroi­bete in yes­ter­day’s Test match.

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