South Africa inflicted the worst defeat in its history on the All Blacks

South Africa inflicted the worst defeat in its history on the All Blacks

Two weeks before the Rugby World Cup, South Africa inflicted the worst defeat in their history on the All Blacks on Friday (35-7). New Zealand will be without second row Scott Barrett for the start of the competition, as she was ruled out during the match. A meeting that witnessed the return of South African national team captain Siya Kolisi after several months of injury.

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Fourteen days before opening Rugby World Cup in FranceOn August 25 in London, South Africa, the defending world champion, inflicted the worst defeat in its history on the New Zealand team (35-7), which also lost its second row, Scott Barrett.

The All Blacks, who have never lost by more than 21 points, will face France on September 8 to open the 2023 World Cup. Barrett, who was shown a red card for a tackle after receiving a yellow card in the 17th minute, could be suspended for this match.

The New Zealand media were not kind to their selection: the match was a “disaster” and a “carnage” with a team that was “poorly disciplined” and made “foolish mistakes”. The New Zealand Herald daily newspaper said Barrett’s red card “seems more like a symptom of their problems than a cause of them.”

The final test before the World Cup in France (8 September – 28 October), this intense and highly committed encounter, the kind of final before its time that could have been one of the World Cup quarter-finals, delivered on all its promises.

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South Africa, who is more likely than ever to succeed him, will face Scotland during their first meeting in the World Cup, which is one of the summits of Group Two, on September 10 in Marseille.

Before the evening match at Twickenham, South Africa maintained a landslide victory over Wales (52-16) last weekend, while the previous All Blacks match dates back to August 5, with a narrow victory over Australia (23-20).

Were the men in black lacking in rhythm? Were they less motivated than the Springboks, who have finished like clockwork since the last confrontation between the two countries, which ended in a clear defeat by South Africa (35-20) last July, during the Rugby Championship? An annual competition that New Zealand once again won, as in the previous three editions.

Replacing Roegaard saves the honor

The All Blacks, who presented their exemplary team in London, held water in all areas of the game: in swarming, in touch, in attack, in conquest…

The South African world champions, including young midfielder Kanan Modi, flew headfirst into the game from the first half, camping out in their opponents’ half and forcing them to make mistakes. The New Zealanders were notably guilty of seven fouls in seventeen minutes.

After the first yellow card from Scott Barrett, and the second from captain Sam Keane (16), the All Blacks, 13 to 15, struggled without their sparkling play.

It is clear that South Africa took advantage of the scoring opportunity through their charismatic captain, Siya Kolisi, who returned from injury in time to participate in the World Cup (7-0, 18th place), and then through their promising young winger, Kurt Lee Arendse, after that. Interceptions (14-0, 34).

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Meanwhile, the New Zealanders looked completely overwhelmed, the bad luck and mistakes piling up: fly-half Richie Mo’unga missed an easy penalty and Will Jordan’s effort at his striker was disallowed just before half-time.

Back from the locker room, South Africa’s dominance became even stronger, with a third try from hooker Malcolm Marks (21-0, 42), a fourth from his replacement Bongi Mbonambi (28-0, 59) and then a final try from the third row. Quagga Smith (35-0, 67).

To save the honor, young substitute Cameron Roegaard scored New Zealand’s only try at the end of the match (35-7, 71).

With Agence France-Presse

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