Rugby Championship News

New Zealand smash South Africa in Albany




New Zealand and South Africa are set to meet on the rugby field for the 94th time since 1921 and are without a doubt, the two pre-eminent teams in the sport.

However, it has been the Kiwis who have dominated this fixture since the Springboks came out of isolation in 1992.

The All Blacks have won nine of their last 10 games against the Boks, including a 42-point win when they last met, which stands as the largest win in history between the two sides.

Die Bokke last beat the Kiwis in 2014 in Johannesburg, which is way too long for the two-time World Champions.

A victory this weekend for New Zealand will all but give them the Rugby Championship trophy.

The All Blacks and South Africa are the only two teams who have played multiple games at North Harbour Stadium to have unbeaten records at the venue.

The hosts have played six Tests at Albany while the visitors played two during the 2011 Rugby World Cup.

After a dismal 2016 season which saw just four wins from 12 Tests, South Africa has bounced back is unbeaten this year, winning six and drawing one Test – 23-all last week against Australia.

The home team, however, despite being heavy favourites, drew the British and Irish Lions series 1-all and continued to be unconvincing against the Wallabies and Argentina.

The All Blacks have made a number of changes to the side that defeated Argentina last week.

In the forwards, Kane Hames comes into loosehead prop for his first Test start, Brodie Retallick and Sam Whitelock return to the second row and Liam Squire slots into the number six jersey in place of Vaea Fifita.

In the backs, Aaron Smith comes in at halfback, Ryan Crotty replaces Anton Lienert-Brown at centre and Rieko Ioane is back on the left wing.

Allister Coetzee is forced to make three changes from the side that drew with Australia. Franco Mostert comes in at lock, Jean-Luc du Preez at openside flanker and Ruan Dreyer at tighthead prop.

Match detail

We are waiting for the kick-off.

1.00: BEEP! BEEP! The anthems have been sung, the Haka laid down, and we are underway in Albany. Springboks skipper Eben Etzebeth won the toss and decided to kick-off.

2.00: Malcolm Marx throws into the first lineout of the game and it’s overthrown. The All Blacks gather and are into the Boks’ 22; poor from the hooker.

3.00: The Kiwis follow suit; Uzair Cassiem wins Dane Coles’ throw and the Boks put up a bomb. Damian McKenzie goes up and loses the ball forwards. First scrum to the Boks.

6.00: South Africa won the free-kick at the set piece and attack inside the Kiwi 22. After eight phases, they lose the ball into touch.

7.00: Nigel Owens awards the visitors a penalty at the breakdown for not releasing by the All Blacks. Elton Jantjies will take a shot from in front, about 41 metres out.

8.00: MISS! The flyhalf’s kick hits the left-hand post and is cleared deep by McKenzie: 0-0

10.00: BIG SCRUM! The Springboks power the All Blacks backwards and win the penalty. That was huge from ‘Beast’ Mtawarira.

12.00: Another series of mistakes hamper South Africa. They lose the ball at the ruck, McKenzie kicked deep and behind Raymond Rhule, who collects, plays a long pass – which bounces – to Andries Coetzee. The fullback then kicks a monster 50-metre clearance, but the ball was brought back into the 22.

14.00: PENALTY! Beauden Barrett slots his first penalty and gets his team on the board: 3-0

17.00: TRYRieko Ioane! The All Blacks win the penalty, Aaron Smith takes it quickly and puts in a great kick behind Courtnall Skosan. Ioane chases and collects to score in the corner: 8-0

18.00: Barrett makes no mistake from out wide: 10-0

21.00: TRY Nehe Milner-Skudder! The winger intercepts and charges into the Springboks’ 22. He offloads to Beauden Barrett, in support, before the first-five eight razzle-dazzles with a no-look back-door pass inside to Milner-Skudder, who scores: 15-0

22.00: No mistake with the conversion: 17-0

25.00: South Africa were winning most of the small battles, but three or four very silly errors, has cost them the game. Make no mistake, this game is over.

28.00: Another lost lineout by South Africa and another opportunity is squandered. Scrum to New Zealand inside their 22.

30.00: Allister Coetzee will be livid with his team. We are going to hear all the same platitudes about not making mistakes and taking your opportunities after this game.

31.00: “All you need is love” by the Beatles rings around the ground as a scuffle breaks out. Brodie Retallick, who else, getting involved in off-the-ball incidents. Kane Hames was pinged for tackling Siya Kolisi around the neck.

33.00: South Africa are penalised at the scrum. Barrett puts the ball near the Bok 22.

34.00: TRY Scott Barrett! Sam Cane gets over the advantage line, the ball is kept alive and in-field. Beauden Barrett puts in a cross-kick. Francois Hougaard is beaten in the air by Dane Coles (yes, Coles, the hooker). The ball is lost forward by Hougaard and picked up by Milner-Skudder and popped to Scott Barrett, who runs into score: 22-0

35.00: Beauden Barrett is having a day with the boot: 24-0

37.00: TRY Brodie Rettalick! Rieko Ioane breaks from deep, slips two tackles (Rhule, again) and races into the Springboks’ 22. The winger plays Coles on the inside before the hooker passes the final ball to the lock: 29-0

38.00: The conversion is good, again: 31-0

40.00: New Zealand wins a penalty and kicks deep for one final attack.

42.00: The Boks turn the ball over – again – and it is cleared to touch. The Kiwis leave to a standing ovation after (another) scintillating half of rugby.

The half-time score was All Blacks 31 Springboks 0

41.00: BEEP! BEEP! We are back underway in Albany; this could be a massacre in North Harbour.

42.00: South Africa and Marx lose another lineout throw. This is terrible by the Springboks.

43.00: We have a field intruder, so there is a break in play.

46.00: Sonny Bill Williams forces two defenders to tackle him before trying an audacious offload, but the ball is lost forward. South Africa will get the put-in.

49.00: The All Blacks are dialled in; their driving maul was superb. Somehow, South Africa keep them at bay.

53.00: TRY Milner-Skudder at the double! It’s his eleventh Test try in 10 matches. It came from a long pass by Beauden Barrett: 36-0

54.00: The kick is missed: 36-0

59.00: South Africa win a meaningless penalty at the breakdown and they will look for some points with a driving maul.

61.00: It comes to nothing. New Zealand wins the penalty and clears the danger.

63.00: Great tackle from Rudy Paige, but the All Blacks get the scrum, five metres out.

64.00: TRY Ofa Tu’ungafasi! The big man drives over from close range after the lineout set piece: 41-0

65.00: Barrett makes it six from seven from the kicking tee: 43-0

74.00: TRY Lima Sopoaga! It started from Anton Lienert-Brown running over Handré Pollard: 48-0

75.00: Fifty points (50). Barrett’s conversion brings up the half-century: 50-0

81.00: TRY Codie Taylor! The All Blacks drive the Boks over their goal line from a driving maul: 55-0

82.00: The conversion is good: 57-0


Live In-Play Betting.

The final score is New Zealand 57 (31) South Africa 0 (0)


New Zealand
Tries – R. Ioane, Milner-Skudder (2), S. Barrett, Rettalick, Tu’ungafasi, Sopoaga, Taylor
Pen – B. Barrett
Con – B. Barrett (7)
Drop –
Cards –

South Africa
Tries –
Pen –
Con –
Drop –
Cards –

Match Officials
Referee: Nigel Owens (WRU)
Assistant Ref 1: Angus Gardner (ARU)
Assistant Ref 2: Matthew Carley (RFU)
TMO: George Ayoub (ARU)


New Zealand

15 Damian McKenzie, 14 Nehe Milner-Skudder, 13 Ryan Crotty, 12 Sonny Bill Williams, 11 Rieko Ioane, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 Aaron Smith, 8 Kieran Read (captain), 7 Sam Cane, 6 Liam Squire, 5 Sam Whitelock, 4 Brodie Retallick, 3 Nepo Laulala, 2 Dane Coles, 1 Kane Hames.

Replacements: 16 Codie Taylor, 17 Wyatt Crockett, 18 Ofa Tu’ungafasi, 19 Scott Barrett, 20 Ardie Savea, 21 Thomas Perenara, 22 Lima Sopoaga, 23 Anton Lienert-Brown.

South Africa 

15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Raymond Rhule, 13 Jesse Kriel, 12 Jan Serfontein, 11 Courtnall Skosan, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Francois Hougaard, 8 Uzair Cassiem, 7 Jean-Luc du Preez, 6 Siya Kolisi, 5 Franco Mostert, 4 Eben Etzebeth (captain), 3 Ruan Dreyer, 2 Malcolm Marx, 1 Tendai Mtawarira.

Replacements: 16 Bongi Mbonambi, 17 Steven Kitshoff, 18 Trevor Nyakane, 19 Lodewyk de Jager, 20 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 21 Rudy Paige, 22 Handré Pollard, 23 Damian de Allende

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