JavaScript disabled. Please enable JavaScript to use My News, My Clippings, My Comments and user settings.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

Springboks maintain Test dominance over England

Date

David Legge

SOUTH AFRICA 22 ENGLAND 17

Clash of the big backs ... Manu Tuilagi is tackled by Frans Steyn.

Clash of the big backs ... Manu Tuilagi is tackled by Frans Steyn. Photo: AFP

DURBAN, South Africa: South Africa maintained their dominance over England with a 22-17 victory Saturday in the Test debut of Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer.

MATCH STATS

It was the eighth win on the trot since 2006 for the green and gold over the Red Roses and a fiercely physical clash was won in the second half when fly-half Morne Steyn and centre and new captain Jean de Villiers scored tries.

South Africa's captain Jean de Villiers.

South Africa's captain Jean de Villiers. Photo: AFP

Steyn had a rare off day with his goal kicking, fluffing three of seven shots, but landed a couple of late penalties to give his team a 10-point advantage before left wing Ben Foden halved it with a stoppage-time try.

Fly-half Owen Farrell succeeded with his four penalty attempts for England, who tackle South Africa twice more during a three-week tour, in Johannesburg next Saturday and on June 23 in Port Elizabeth.

A number of players finished the match bloodied and bruised with South Africa-born England inside centre Brad Barritt retiring before the hour mark because of a badly swollen eye.

Ben Foden scores England's only try.

Ben Foden scores England's only try. Photo: Reuters

De Villiers, the first centre to lead the Springboks in 88 years, said he was proud of his team, especially as they had less than a week to prepare after playing Super 15 rugby last weekend.

"The result was great although our performance had flaws -- we made some wrong decisions out there. It was a very physical encounter and we will learn from it," he promised.

England flanker and skipper Chris Robshaw said: "We came out all guns blazing in the second half but, unfortunately, they got an early score and managed to build pressure on us.

South Africa's captain Jean de Villiers scores.

South Africa's captain Jean de Villiers scores. Photo: Reuters

"Obviously, we wanted to win the first Test, but it is onwards and upwards now with a lot of hard work ahead. In the closing stages we put our stamp on the game and must learn to do that for the full 80 minutes."

A tight opening half offered few try-scoring chances and ended 6-6 with all the points coming via penalties with Farrell twice putting the visitors ahead and Steyn twice levelling.

Six Nations runners-up England impressed at the breakdown, slowing down South African ball, but were penalised several times by referee Steve Walsh for early engagement at scrums.

South Africa's Willem Alberts is tackled by England's Mouritz Botha. Click for more photos

Boks on top in Durban

South Africa win a tough contest under new coach Heyneke Meyer and captain Jean de VIlliers. Photo: Reuters

Farrell put England ahead on seven minutes after debutant Springbok lock Eben Etzebeth did not roll away from the tackle and Steyn restored equality seven minutes later from his first kick at goal.

England won a vital turn-over inside their 22-metre area when South Africa threatened to score after several breaks from scrum-half Francois Hougaard took the green and gold close to the try-line.

A superb break from No 8 Ben Morgan culminated in a penalty for England which Farrell slotted between the posts after 27 minutes and the visitors were ahead again.

Tom Johnson charges down a kick by Francois Hougaard.

Tom Johnson charges down a kick by Francois Hougaard. Photo: AP

However, the advantage lasted just three minutes before leading 2011 Rugby World Cup points scorer Steyn kicked his second penalty after England were caught offside.

England were expected to have the upper hand at the line-outs against debutants Etzebeth and Juandre Kruger, but they went with the throw until just before half-time when England 'stole' one after a deflection.

Steyn had a chance to put the Springboks ahead in first-half stoppage time, but easily the most difficult kick of the half from close to the touchline drifted right of the posts.

South Africa were a transformed team from the start of the second half, winning more breakdown ball, and far quicker, and by the hour mark had established a 16-6 advantage through a couple of tries.

A midfield break by outstanding left wing Bryan Habana was followed on by De Villiers and prop Jannie du Plessis, and ended with Steyn selling a dummy to go over far out.

England were pinned in their half and had a let-off when South Africa opted to run a close-range penalty that failed to yield any reward, much to the fury of a visibly tense Meyer.

But the disappointment was soon forgotten as another Habana break led to a second try with De Villiers taking a JP Pietersen pass and cutting in to dot down.

Farrell kicked two penalties within three minutes to cut the South African advantage to 16-12 before Steyn atoned for three consecutive misses by slotting a penalty.

Another Steyn penalty made the game safe at 22-12 before Foden eluded centre Francois Steyn to dive over in the corner for a consolation try that Farrell could not convert.

SOUTH AFRICA 21 (Morne Steyn, Jean de Villiers tries; Steyn 4 pens) def  ENGLAND 17 (Ben Foden try; Owen Farrell 4 pens)

AFP

Related Coverage

Super Rugby 2015

Round 1
Fri, 13 FebTimes shown AEDT
CRU 10 vs REB 20 Report Stats
BRU 47 vs RED 3 Stats
Sat, 14 FebTimes shown AEDT
LIO 8 vs HUR 22 Stats
BLU 18 vs CHF 23 Report Stats
Sun, 15 FebTimes shown AEDT
SHA 29 vs CHT 35 Stats
BUL 17 vs STO 29 Stats
WAR 13 vs FOR 25 Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 2
Fri, 20 FebTimes shown AEDT
CHF 19 vs BRU 17 Stats
REB 28 vs WAR 38 Stats
Sat, 21 FebTimes shown AEDT
BUL 13 vs HUR 17 Stats
HIG 20 vs CRU 26 Stats
RED 18 vs FOR 6 Stats
Sun, 22 FebTimes shown AEDT
STO 27 vs BLU 16 Stats
SHA 29 vs LIO 12 Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 3
Fri, 27 FebTimes shown AEDT
HIG 20 vs RED 13 Stats
FOR 13 vs HUR 42 Stats
Sat, 28 FebTimes shown AEDT
CHT 25 vs BLU 24 Stats
CHF 40 vs CRU 16 Stats
REB 15 vs BRU 20 Stats
Sun, 01 MarTimes shown AEDT
BUL 43 vs SHA 35 Stats
LIO 19 vs STO 22 Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 4
Fri, 06 MarTimes shown AEDT
CHF vs HIG 17:35WS
BRU vs FOR 19:40GIO Stadium
Sat, 07 MarTimes shown AEDT
BLU vs LIO 17:35QBE Stadium
RED vs WAR 19:40SS
Sun, 08 MarTimes shown AEDT
CHT vs BUL 02:05FSS
STO vs SHA 04:10DHL Newlands
View All Fixtures
Round 5
Fri, 13 MarTimes shown AEDT
HUR vs BLU 17:35FMG Stadium
FOR vs REB 22:00nib Stadium
Sat, 14 MarTimes shown AEDT
CRU vs LIO 14:30AMI
HIG vs WAR 17:35FBS
RED vs BRU 19:40SS
Sun, 15 MarTimes shown AEDT
STO vs CHF 00:00DHL Newlands
CHT vs SHA 02:05FSS
View All Fixtures
Round 6
Fri, 20 MarTimes shown AEDT
HIG vs HUR 17:35FBS
REB vs LIO 19:40AAMI
Sat, 21 MarTimes shown AEDT
CRU vs CHT 17:35AMI
Sun, 22 MarTimes shown AEDT
BUL vs FOR 02:05Loftus Versfeld
SHA vs CHF 04:10Growthpoint Kings Park
WAR vs BRU 16:05AS
View All Fixtures
Round 7
Fri, 27 MarTimes shown AEDT
HUR vs REB 17:35WS
RED vs LIO 20:00SS
Sat, 28 MarTimes shown AEDT
CHF vs CHT 14:30WS
HIG vs STO 17:35FBS
WAR vs BLU 19:40AS
Sun, 29 MarTimes shown AEDT
SHA vs FOR 02:05Growthpoint Kings Park
BUL vs CRU 04:10Loftus Versfeld
View All Fixtures
Round 8
Fri, 03 AprTimes shown AEDT
HUR vs STO 18:35WS
REB vs RED 20:40AAMI
Sat, 04 AprTimes shown AEDT
CHF vs BLU 18:35WS
BRU vs CHT 20:40GIO Stadium
Sun, 05 AprTimes shown AEDT
SHA vs CRU 01:00Growthpoint Kings Park
LIO vs BUL 02:05Emirates Airlines Park
View All Fixtures
Round 9
Fri, 10 AprTimes shown AEST
BLU vs BRU 18:35EP
Sat, 11 AprTimes shown AEST
CRU vs HIG 18:35AMI
WAR vs STO 20:40AS
FOR vs CHT 22:45nib Stadium
Sun, 12 AprTimes shown AEST
BUL vs RED 00:00Loftus Versfeld
LIO vs SHA 02:05Emirates Airlines Park
View All Fixtures
Round 10
Fri, 17 AprTimes shown AEST
CRU vs CHF 18:35AMI
Sat, 18 AprTimes shown AEST
HUR vs WAR 15:30WS
HIG vs BLU 18:35FBS
BRU vs REB 20:40GIO Stadium
FOR vs STO 22:45nib Stadium
Sun, 19 AprTimes shown AEST
SHA vs BUL 02:05Growthpoint Kings Park
CHT vs RED 04:10FSS
View All Fixtures
Round 11
Fri, 24 AprTimes shown AEST
CHF vs FOR 18:35WS
BRU vs HIG 20:40GIO Stadium
Sat, 25 AprTimes shown AEST
CRU vs BLU 18:35AMI
WAR vs REB 20:40ANZ
Sun, 26 AprTimes shown AEST
LIO vs CHT 02:05Emirates Airlines Park
STO vs BUL 04:10DHL Newlands
RED vs HUR 17:05SS
View All Fixtures
Round 12
Fri, 01 MayTimes shown AEST
HIG vs SHA 18:35FBS
BRU vs WAR 20:40GIO Stadium
Sat, 02 MayTimes shown AEST
BLU vs FOR 16:30EP
HUR vs CRU 18:35WS
REB vs CHF 20:40AAMI
Sun, 03 MayTimes shown AEST
CHT vs STO 02:05FSS
BUL vs LIO 04:10Loftus Versfeld
View All Fixtures
Round 13
Fri, 08 MayTimes shown AEST
CRU vs RED 18:35AMI
REB vs BLU 20:40AAMI
Sat, 09 MayTimes shown AEST
HUR vs SHA 18:35WS
FOR vs WAR 20:40nib Stadium
Sun, 10 MayTimes shown AEST
LIO vs HIG 00:00Emirates Airlines Park
STO vs BRU 02:05DHL Newlands
View All Fixtures
Round 14
Fri, 15 MayTimes shown AEST
BLU vs BUL 18:35EP
RED vs REB 20:40SS
Sat, 16 MayTimes shown AEST
HUR vs CHF 18:35WS
WAR vs SHA 20:40AS
Sun, 17 MayTimes shown AEST
LIO vs BRU 02:05Emirates Airlines Park
CHT vs HIG 04:10FSS
View All Fixtures
Round 15
Fri, 22 MayTimes shown AEST
CHF vs BUL 18:35Rotorua International Stadium
RED vs SHA 20:40SS
Sat, 23 MayTimes shown AEST
BLU vs HUR 18:35Emirates Airlines Park
WAR vs CRU 20:40ANZ
FOR vs HIG 22:45nib Stadium
Sun, 24 MayTimes shown AEST
CHT vs LIO 02:05FSS
STO vs REB 04:10DHL Newlands
View All Fixtures
Round 16
Fri, 29 MayTimes shown AEST
CRU vs HUR 18:35Trafalgar Park
BRU vs BUL 20:40GIO Stadium
Sat, 30 MayTimes shown AEST
SHA vs REB 04:10Growthpoint Kings Park
HIG vs CHF 18:35Rugby Park
FOR vs RED 20:40nib Stadium
Sun, 31 MayTimes shown AEST
STO vs CHT 02:05DHL Newlands
LIO vs WAR 04:10Emirates Airlines Park
View All Fixtures
Round 17
Fri, 05 JunTimes shown AEST
HUR vs HIG 18:35McLean Park
FOR vs BRU 22:00nib Stadium
Sat, 06 JunTimes shown AEST
REB vs BUL 16:30AAMI
BLU vs CRU 18:35EP
RED vs CHF 20:40SS
Sun, 07 JunTimes shown AEST
CHT vs WAR 00:00FSS
STO vs LIO 02:05DHL Newlands
View All Fixtures
Round 18
Fri, 12 JunTimes shown AEST
BLU vs HIG 18:35EP
REB vs FOR 20:40AAMI
Sat, 13 JunTimes shown AEST
BRU vs CRU 16:30GIO Stadium
CHF vs HUR 18:35Yarrow Stadium
WAR vs RED 20:40AS
Sun, 14 JunTimes shown AEST
BUL vs CHT 02:05Loftus Versfeld
SHA vs STO 04:10Growthpoint Kings Park
View All Fixtures
Round 19
Fri, 19 JunTimes shown AEST
7 vs 7 10:00
Sat, 20 JunTimes shown AEST
7 vs 7 10:00
View All Fixtures
Round 20
Fri, 26 JunTimes shown AEST
7 vs 7 10:00
Sat, 27 JunTimes shown AEST
7 vs 7 10:00
View All Fixtures
Round 21
Sat, 04 JulTimes shown AEST
7 vs 7 10:00
View All Fixtures
Super Rugby 2015
Overall standings
Team P W L D +/- Pts
Brumbies 3 2 1 0 47 10
Hurricanes 3 3 0 0 47 13
Stormers 3 3 0 0 26 12
Cheetahs 2 2 0 0 7 9
Chiefs 3 3 0 0 31 13
Rebels 3 1 2 0 -5 6
Highlanders 2 1 1 0 1 5
Sharks 3 1 2 0 3 6
View all
 
Featured advertisers