South Africa host Australia in the first Rugby Championship match this weekend and the winner of the match should finish the weekend in second place in the standings.
Australia’s last victory in the Republic was in 2011, while the Springboks have won eight of their last nine home games.
However, South Africa’s last game in Bloemfontein was in 2010, when they lost 39-41 to the Wallabies.
Bloemfontein, for some reason, has been good to the Wallabies. They have played there four times, winning and losing twice, although, other than 2010, the previous victory was in 1933.
Dillyn Leyds and Francois Louw’s inclusion in the back row are two of the four changes to the Springbok squad.
The experienced flanker is set to earn his 53rd Test cap for the Springboks at Toyota Stadium, while Leyds will make his fourth appearance and first start on the wing, in place of Raymond Rhule.
Scrumhalf Ross Cronje is over his illness that forced him to withdraw from the New Zealand Test in Albany and starts in place of Francois Hougaard, who is out of the matchday 23.
Hooker Chiliboy Ralepelle has been included for the first time since the home Test against Italy in June 2013.
The experienced Sharks hooker replaces Bongi Mbonambi, who played off the bench in the previous seven Test this year.
Bernard Foley wins his 5oth Test cap today in the City of Roses. Jack Dempsey replaces Ned Hanigan in the loose forwards.
We are waiting for the kick-off.
1.00: BEEP! BEEP! Referee Ben O’Keeffe gets us underway in the City of Roses with Bernard Foley, playing his 50th Test, kicking deep.
3.00: South Africa attacks from deep, going 10 phases, before winning the scrum outside the Wallabies’ 22.
4.00: Australia earns a free kick and takes it quickly. It is recovered inside the Boks’ 22 and they clear with a huge kick that goes out five metres from the visitor’s goal line. Australia wins their ball and Foley clears the danger.
6.00: The home team are spreading the ball at every opportunity, but the Wallaby defence holds firm. Kurtley Beale clears to the Bok 10 after his forwards won the ball back.
8.00: Some sloppy play at the ruck sees Michael Hooper snap up the loose ball. The visitors go wide and win a penalty at the breakdown after South Africa goes off their feet. Foley puts the ball into touch inside the Boks’ 22.
9.00: Australia gets the put into the scrum after a knock forward. The scrum is to the right but on the 22: a good attacking opportunity for the Aussies. Francois Louw is packing down at No 8 on the defensive scrums for South Africa.
11.00: TRY Israel Folau! A wonderful first-phase score by the Aussies. The fullback gathered an inside pass from Foley at pace and ghosted through the porous Springboks defence and he scores under the posts: 0-5
12.00: CONVERSION Foley, who passes 500 Test points: 0-7
14.00: South Africa are trying to play with width, but they are going backwards by some good Aussie defending. Eventually, Hooper is pinged for offsides and Elton Jantjies will kick to the Wallabies’ 22.
16.00: Beast Mtawarira powers forward and is only stopped after making 10 yards. South Africa gets another penalty in the build-up, and kick to the corner.
18.00: TRY Ruan Dreyer! The tighthead is tackled short but gets up and stretches over the try line, after not being held, for his first Test-try. The try was made possible after some quick ball from the ruck and some pick and goes before the prop crashed over: 5-7
19.00: CONVERSION Jantjies: 7-7
22.00: Australia is back inside the Boks’ territory. They go wide but lose the ball in contact, however, they are called back for a penalty for a high tackle. Foley calls for the tee. The kick is in front about 40 metres out.
23.00: PENALTY Foley, the kick sails through the middle: 7-10
25.00: Eben Etzebeth charges forwards, running over an Aussie defender. From the second phase, an Australian hand knocks the ball down and South Africa is awarded a penalty for a deliberate knockdown. Jantjies calls for the tee.
26.00: PENALTY! Jantjies’ kick sneaks inside the posts and the scores are level, again: 10-all
27.00: Australia win another penalty, but instead of taking the points, Foley kicks to the corner. However, the kick is long and South Africa gets the scrum from the spot of the foul. Bad mistake by the standoff, and Hooper, who should have gone for poles.
29.00: MASSIVE SCRUM! The ‘Beast’ dominated Sekope Kepu, who popped as the Wallabies’ pack was dismantled.
30.00: Louw bursts through after not being held in the tackle, but the ball is lost after Malcolm Marx’s loose pass. From there, Australia counter-attack and might be in for the score after Folau chases the long kick.
31.00: NO TRY! Courtnall Skosan beat the fullback to dot down for a 22.
32.00: Marx is penalised for hands in the ruck; Foley will kick to the corner, and this time, he does not fluff his lines.
33.00: BIG LET-OFF for South Africa after Kepu knocks on during a promising Australian attack.
34.00: Dreyer (the most penalised prop in Super Rugby) is penalised at the scrum; his feet slipped out from under him and Foley will kick at goal from 10 metres out and in front.
35.00: PENALTY! Foley makes no mistake and Australia leads for the third time in the half: 10-13
37.00: A massive scuffle breaks out on the sideline between Etzebeth and Scott Sio. The referee calls Hooper over to talk about the high tackle on Dillyn Leyds, who was dragged out by his hair. The Boks’ skipper is also being talked to about off-the-ball incidents. Folau dragged Leyds out by his hair, which led to the rumble.
38.00: Izack Rodda is caught pulling down the driving maul. Jantjies kicks to the corner for the second time.
39.00: Marx’s throw is to the back, but off target and Reece Hodges clears. That’s poor from the Boks.
41.00: Australia has a scrum inside their 22. It is reset twice before Will Genia boots the ball into the stands.
The halftime score was Springboks 10 Wallabies 13
41.00: BEEP! BEEP! We are back underway in Bloemfontein. South Africa has the first lineout of the half, but it is lost after Australia read the throw.
43.00: The home team have had the better of the territory and possession with 63 percent, but they have been careless with it.
43.00: TRY Jan Serfontein! The centre gathered the ball on the bounce after Leyds inside pass on the touchline, but it was started after Siya Kolisi ran over Beale: 15-13
44.00: CONVERSION Jantjies: 17-13
46.00: TRY Marika Koroibete! It started after Foley sped through a gap and handed off Kolisi. The standoff drew the last defender and passed to the winger, who beat Skosan to score: 17-18
47.00: CONVERSION Foley: 17-20
49.00: TRY Courtnall Skosan! Serfontein set-up the try after holding off Adam Coleman and popping to the supporting Skosan. The Lions wing cut inside and drove over the whitewash with Beale and Foley hanging on to his shirt tails: 22-20
50.00: CONVERSION Jantjies: 24-20
53.00: It’s end-to-end at the moment. As always in the highveld, the last 20 minutes will be crucial for the visitors as the air starts to get thinner and breathing becomes tougher as the lactic acid builds in the lungs.
56.00: TRY Marika Koroibete gets his second! Australia marched the Boks into their 22 and after some phases, sent the ball wide. Foley, seeing the overlap on his outside, passed a wide, long pass out to Koroibete, beating Leyds and Ross Cronje before the wing crossed in the corner: 24-25
57.00: CONVERSION! Foley slots the touchline kick to extend his team’s lead to three: 24-27
61.00: Australia’s rush defence is causing South Africa problems; their set piece is starting to dominate too. Both benches are starting to be emptied in this crucial last quarter.
65.00: Cronje stops Tevita Kuridrani with a brave tackle, five metres from the Boks’ tryline. Leyds supported the scrumhalf and South Africa won a penalty. Big moment in the Test.
67.00: Hodge saves the day, intercepting Jesse Kriel’s pass to Serfontein. There are some tired legs out there now. Trevor Nyakane wins a penalty after Hodge is caught holding at the ruck. Jantjies will take a shot from more than 50 metres.
70.00: PENALTY! Jantjies levels the score with the long-range kick: 27-all
73.00: Time is ticking away…South Africa is in possession inside the Aussies’ half and is looking to offload in the tackle as the drive up the field.
74.00: After eight phases, the Boks lose the ball with some poor handling. Beale clears down the field and the visitors start another attack. The game is opening up and the players’ legs are going.
78.00: Penalty to South Africa. Jantjies is down but gets up to take a shot at goal. The kick is wide to the left and outside the Aussie 22.
79.00: MISS! It’s wide from the flyhalf: 27-27
80.00: The hooter sounds and the Boks have the ball…and it’s another draw.
Final score: South Africa 27 (10) Australia 27 (13)
Tries – Dreyer, Serfontein, Skosan
Pen – Jantjies (2)
Con – Jantjies (3)
Tries – Folau, Koroibete (2)
Pen – Foley (2)
Con – Foley (3)
Referee: Ben O’Keeffe (New Zealand)
Assistant Ref 1: Shuhei Kubo (Japan)
Assistant Ref 2: Jérôme Garcès (France)
TMO: Rowan Kitt (England)
15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Dillyn Leyds, 13 Jesse Kriel, 12 Jan Serfontein, 11 Courtnall Skosan, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Ross Cronje, 8 Uzair Cassiem, 7 Francois Louw, 6 Siyamthanda Kolisi, 5 Francois Mostert, 4 Eben Etzebeth (captain), 3 Ruan Dreyer, 2 Malcolm Marx, 1 Tendai Mtawarira
Replacements: 16 Mahlatse Ralepelle, 17 Steven Kitshoff, 18 Trevor Nyakane, 19 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 20 Jean-Luc du Preez, 21 Rudy Paige, 22 Handré Pollard, 23 Damian de Allende
15 Israel Folau, 14 Marika Koroibete, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Kurtley Beale, 11 Reece Hodge, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Will Genia, 8 Sean McMahon, 7 Michael Hooper (captain), 6 Jack Dempsey, 5 Adam Coleman, 4 Izack Rodda, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Tatafu Polota-Nau, 1 Scott Sio
Replacements: 16 Stephen Moore, 17 Tom Robertson, 18 Allan Alaalatoa, 19 Rob Simmons, 20 Ned Hanigan, 21 Lukhan Tui, 22 Nick Phipps, 23 Samu Kerevi