Boks batter Pumas to claim Rugby Championship crown

2019-08-11T20:09:33+02:00August 10th, 2019|

The Springboks beat Argentina 46-13 in Salta on Saturday to secure the Rugby Championship title. SIMON BORCHARDT reports.

It is the Boks’ first Sanzaar crown since 2009 and just their fourth overall in 24 tournaments.

As expected, the Boks dominated the Pumas at scrum time, with Trevor Nyakane, Bongi Mbonambi and Tendai Mtawarira enhancing their reputation as a front-row unit during their 47-minute stint together. Nyakane, after this performance, must surely be regarded as the first-choice Bok tighthead.

Handré Pollard scored two of the Boks’ five tries, while kicking three conversions and five penalties for a 31-point haul.

The Pumas made an impressive start to the match. Nicolás Sánchez broke through the Bok defence and found Facundo Isa, who was brought to ground inside the 22. With the referee playing advantage, Sánchez’s cross-kick was collected by Santiago Cordero in the right-hand corner.

Handré Pollard got the Boks on the board with a penalty goal, before Bongi Mbonambi went over from a lineout driving maul to put them 8-7 ahead.

Two Sánchez penalties and three from Pollard made it 17-13, with the Bok flyhalf then scoring a self-converted try in the last play of the first half to give his side an 11-point cushion.

Pollard kicked his fifth penalty early in the second half but the Pumas dominated the next period of play. They came close to scoring from driving mauls and after a string of penalties, Faf de Klerk was yellow-carded for side entry at a ruck.

But the Boks didn’t concede any points while he was off the field and in fact added to their tally when Pollard scored his second try.

A long pass from Pollard then put Makazole Mapimpi away in the left-hand corner, before Cheslin Kolbe scored on the other side after good work from Frans Steyn and Pieter-Steph du Toit.

These teams will meet again next Saturday at Loftus in a World Cup warm-up Test.

Argentina – Try: Santiago Cordero. Conversion: Nicolás Sánchez. Penalties: Sánchez (2).
Springboks – Tries: Bongi Mbonambi, Handré Pollard (2), Makazole Mapimpi, Cheslin Kolbe. Conversions: Handré Pollard (3). Penalties: Pollard (5).

Argentina – 15 Emilian Boffelli , 14 Santiago Cordero, 13 Matías Moroni, 12 Jerónimo de la Fuente, 11 Ramiro Moyano, 10 Nicolás Sánchez, 9 Tomás Cubelli, 8 Facundo Isa, 7 Javier Ortega Desio, 6 Pablo Matera, 5 Marcos Kremer, 4 Matías Alemanno, 3 Juan Figallo, 2 Agustin Creevy (c), 1 Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro.
Subs: 16 Julian Montoya, 17 Mayco Vivas, 18 Ramiro Herera, 19 Guido Petti, 20 Tomas Lezana, 21 Gonzalo Bertranou, 22 Benjamín Urdapilleta, 23 Joaquin Tuculet.

Springboks – 15 Willie le Roux, 14 Cheslin Kolbe, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Handré Pollard, 9 Faf de Klerk, 8 Duane Vermeulen (c), 7 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 6 Kwagga Smith, 5 Franco Mostert, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Trevor Nyakane, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 Tendai Mtawarira.
Subs: 16 Malcolm Marx, 17 Steven Kitshoff, 18 Frans Malherbe, 19 RG Snyman, 20 Francois Louw, 21 Herschel Jantjies, 22 Frans Steyn, 23 Jesse Kriel.