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Who will dominate

Written by Pierre McLeod (pierre_mackie)

Posted in :All Blacks, Original Content, RWC 2015, Springboks on 23 Oct 2015 at 12:25
Tagged with : , , , , , , , , ,

The fierce rivalry between the Springboks and the All Blacks started in 1921 in Dunedin New Zealand when the home side won 13 – 5, but little did anyone know that 94 years later these two proud nations will still be battling it out to dominate the known Rugby World over 80 minutes.

South Africa dominated the early years as they won 21 of the first 42 tests played, 3 ended in a draw, but that figure changed dramatically at the start of the professional era as the All Blacks won 34 out of the last 48.

Despite only a 39% win record against the men in black, the Springboks are one game up when it comes to Rugby World Cups, having won 2 out of their 3 encounters. The first a 15 – 12 win in the 1995 Final in South Africa followed by a third place play-off 22 – 18 win in 1999 when the tournament was hosted by Wales. New Zealand won the 2003 quarter-final when they beat South Africa 29 – 9 in Australia.

The scene is set for another Rugby World Cup encounter, this time a crucial semifinal at Twickenham in England.

The Springboks will have 701 caps in their starting XV, 377 caps amongst the forwards and 324 in the backline with further 461 on the bench. Bryan Habana is the most experienced back with 114 caps, while Schalk Burger is the most experienced forward with 84 caps. Victor Matfield will be the most experience player on the bench with 125 of those 461 caps.

Undoubtedly all eyes will be on the man in the middle, French referee Jerome Garces. At this Rugby World Cup he officiated three test matches, including South Africa’s lost against Japan in the first round. This will also be his seventh involving the Springboks, of the previous six South Africa have won three and lost three.

The Springboks have played 21 tests in the 81 605 seater Twickenham, winning 12 and losing 9. Two previous Rugby World Cup matches at this stadium were against Australia in 1999 and Wales a week ago.

South African records at Twickenham inludes Jannie de Beer with the most points, 21, against Australia in 1999, he also holds the record for the most penalties, 6, scored in the same match. Chester Williams holds the record for the most tries, 2, against England in 1995. Ruan Pienaar holds the record for the most conversions, 3, against England in 2008. Andre Pretorius holds the record for the most drop goals, 4, against England in 2006.

We are all too familiar with what will happen on Saturday. South Africa needs to be 100% accurate in their execution and all we can hope for is that it does not come down to a 50/50 call in the last minute.

With all said and done, the only thing left to speculate is whether the All Blacks will do the “Ka Mate” or the “Kapa o Pango”.


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