Rugby | 5 memorable NZ v SA clashes

Pat Lambie (Gallo Images)

London – Saturday’s Rugby World Cup semi-final between New Zealand and South Africa will be the 91st clash between two of rugby’s fiercest rivals. Here are five of their most memorable matches.

READ: Boks v All Blacks – 19 stats and facts

READ: Springboks’ Test record against the All Blacks

READ: No more ifs and buts… this is it!

1956 – Auckland: New Zealand 11 South Africa 5

The fourth and final Test with New Zealand needing victory for their first series win over South Africa and to inflict the first series loss on the Springboks since the British Isles toured the republic in 1896.

A Don Clarke penalty in the 15th minute produced the only points for the All Blacks in a tense first half.

After the break, back row Peter Jones beat Springbok fullback Basie Viviers and sprinted 30-metres to score and Clarke added a second penalty to have the All Blacks up 11-0.

Wing Roy Dryburgh scored a late try for the Springboks as they fought to the end but their 60-year aura of invincibility was broken.

1995 – Johannesburg: South Africa 15 New Zealand 12

A monumental match that decided the World Cup final and had huge significance in South Africa’s post-apartheid era.

The iconic sight of South Africa president Nelson Mandela, wearing a Springbok jersey, presenting the cup to Francois Pienaar is widely to be one of the greatest moments in sporting history.

In a gripping final there were no tries and many of the All Blacks, hot favourites to win the match, claimed to be stricken by food poisoning.

At the end of regular time it was 9-9 with the Springboks’ Joel Stransky and the All Blacks’ Andrew Mehrtens kicking all the points.

Each scored one more penalty in the first period of extra-time before a Stransky drop-goal seven minutes from the end of determined the outcome.

2000 – Johannesburg: South Africa 46 New Zealand 40

An action-packed spectacle with 10 tries, eight before half-time. The Springboks had lost their four previous matches going into the game.

It set records for the highest score South Africa have ever posted against New Zealand as well as the most tries and highest total points in a Springboks-All Blacks Test.

An under-pressure South Africa led 33-13 before New Zealand mounted a sterling comeback to hit the front 37-36. In a frenetic climax, Braam van Straaten regained the lead for South Africa with a penalty only for Andrew Mehrtens’s drop-goal to edge New Zealand a point in front before a Werner Swanepoel try sealed the Springboks’ victory.

2013 – Johannesburg: New Zealand 38 South Africa 27

A nine-try thriller to decide the Rugby Championship.

Bryan Habana touched down twice in the opening 20 minutes in a blitz beginning by the Springboks.

But the All Blacks hit the front 21-15 after the half-time hooter had sounded with a try to Liam Messam when South Africa blew an attempt to run out of trouble.

The lead changed four times early in the second half before a late try by New Zealand’s Kieran Read settled the outcome.

2014 – Johannesburg: South Africa 27 New Zealand 25

An epic showdown where the Springboks ended the All Blacks’ 22-match unbeaten run when Pat Lambie’s 55-metre penalty went over with 90-seconds left on the clock.

The Springboks attacked from the start, leading 21-13 at half-time with two Handre Pollard tries and one by Francois Hougaard after a daring long-range run by the Springboks.

Pollard landed a further penalty after the break before he was replaced by Lambie and the All Blacks staged a comeback.

They rejected shots at goal and ran the ball at every opportunity to eventually lead 25-24. Lambie reclaimed the game for the Springboks at the death.

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