Rugby: Springboks break long Brisbane drought

Rugby Championship - Australia v South Africa - 7 September 2013 - Sunscorp Stadium Brisbane South Africa's Willie Le Roux scores a try Photograph : Jason O'Brien / Photosport
Rugby Championship - Australia v South Africa - 7 September 2013 - Sunscorp Stadium Brisbane South Africa's Willie Le Roux scores a try Photograph : Jason O'Brien / Photosport

South Africa broke its long drought in Brisbane and did it in emphatic style, with captain Jean de Villiers starting the celebrations in the 60th minute of a bonus-point 38-12 win over Australia on Saturday.

The Springboks hadn't won in Brisbane since 1971 and came into the match on an eight-match losing streak in the city since their return from the apartheid era ban.

They dominated from the start, with replacement prop Coenie Oosthuizen driving over from a close-range lineout in the sixth minute.

De Villiers raised his arm in triumph as he dived over for a decisive try on the hour to give the South Africans a 10-point buffer, opening the floodgates at Suncorp Stadium.

Zane Kirchner and Willie Le Roux also crossed out wide as the Springboks piled on three tries in eight minutes to secure a bonus point and give South Africa the lead in the Rugby Championship with three wins from three starts.

It was South Africa's biggest win in Australia.

``It's always good to get a win against a (team) like Australia,'' de Villiers said. ``To score four tries against Australia in Brisbane, you can't ask for more than that.''

The South African forwards provided a steady flow of possession and the defense nullified the dangerous Australian backs.

The Wallabies were disjointed in attack, making only one clean line break in the first half and failing to score a try in a test against South Africa for the first time since 2001.

The test was barely five minutes old when Oosthuizen, on as a bloodbin replacement for Jannie du Plessis, was driven over beside the posts by Flip van de Merwe.

Morne Steyn landed the conversion and added three penalties as the Springboks took a 16-6 at the break, despite giving up a one-man advantage for 10 minutes when flanker Willem Alberts was in the sin bin.

Christian Leali'ifano landed two goals for the Wallabies and closed the gap to six points with another penalty in the second half before the Australians lost flanker Michael Hooper to the sin bin for a lifting tackle on Bryan Habana. The South Africans were in complete control for the last half hour.

The Springboks head to New Zealand on a nine-match winning streak, and with a one-point buffer over the All Blacks at the top of the Rugby Championship.

Will Genia, standing in as Australia captain for injured lock James Horwill, said the Wallabies made too many errors.

``We will have to take a hard look at ourselves, dust ourselves off and be better,'' he said. ``They forced errors out of us and capitalized on it.''

The Australians haven't looked like winning any of the three tests since Ewen McKenzie replaced Robbie Deans as coach, and the Wallabies have now lost five of their last six tests.

They'll have to regroup quickly to prepare for next week's test against Argentina, before two away matches to finish off the championship.

``We have to get a win,'' Genia said. ``We need to start playing the rugby we know we can play.''

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Scores:

South Africa 38 (Coenie Oosthuizen, Jean de Villiers, Zane Kirchner, Willie le Roux tries; Morne Steyn 3 conversions, 4 penalties), Australia 12 (Christian Leali'ifano 4 penalties). HT: 16-6.

-AP

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