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South Africa and New Zealand meet in the final round of the Rugby Championship on Saturday at the Growthpoint Kings Park in Durban. When the two sides faced each other in New Zealand in Round 4, the All Blacks outscored the visiting Springboks by 6-1 tries, and by 41-13 on the scoreboard. Last weekend, the Springboks claimed just their second victory of the 2016 tournament, when they beat Australia by 18-10 at Loftus Versfeld. All of the Springboks points came from the boot of Morne Steyn.
Last weekend's result lifted the Boks a point above the Wallabies, but still a massive 15 points behind the All Blacks. The last time that the South Africa played a Test match in Durban, was in last season's truncated Rugby Championship, when they slipped to a 25-37 defeat to Argentina. The last time that the All Blacks visited the Stadium was back in 2009, when they lost by 19-31. If the All Blacks win Saturday's fixtures, they will equal the World record of 17 straight victories. All five All Blacks victories in this season's tournament's have come accompanied by a try-scoring bonus point, with last weekend's victory in Argentina by 36-17 being the smallest margin.
Posted: 25th July 2015
After losing their opening game in the 2015 Rugby Championship last weekend in Brisbane to the Wallabies, the Springboks find themselves in the last chance saloon on Saturday, when they host the All Blacks in Johannesburg. In a truncated season due to the World Cup in England, which starts in mid-September, each team will play only three matches in 2015. It will therefore, take a minimum of two victories to secure this season’s title. South Africa led in Brisbane by 20-7 during the second half, and looked set for a vital away win. But they had to withstand a rampant Wallaby side for the last 25 minutes, who nibbled away at the lead, until they scored a winning try with the last play of the game.
Although the Boks have won 17 of the last 19 internationals played on their own soil, those defeats came against Saturday’sopponents. The All Blacks opened the defence of their title with a comfortable 39-18 win in Christchurch against Argentina, during which they registered five tries. Last season, the home side won a thrilling fixture by 27-25 at the same venue, which was the first defeat the New Zealand have suffered in the tournament, since it evolved into its present format, from the tri-nations in 2012.
Posted: 5th October 2013
Although the All Blacks will take on the Springboks in the Rugby Championship finale this weekend, with a slight advantage in terms of match points, they will be entering an arena, which may be the one place on earth that they don't ever feel supremely confident. Ellis Park, in Jo'burg.
The Springboks are in good form, and they have a sniff of a first title in four years, which with the added advantage of a frenzied and biased home crowd behind them, may just be enough to help them achieve a sufficiently large margin of victory, to lift the trophy away from their greatest rivals. To capture the trophy, South Africa need to beat New Zealand by a margin of more than seven points, as well as score fours tries into the bargain, and ensure the visitors score a maximum of three themselves. History would seem to be against the Springboks achieving all of these requirements. The All Blacks have so far conceded just seven tries in eight games this year, while South Africa haven't scored four tries against New Zealand in nine years. New Zealand have also triumphed in seven of the last eight games between the two sides.
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