It was a question of honor, that already, of the southern hemisphere after the new Irish and English victories in New Zealand and Australia. Above all, that of a reigning world champion nation with a status scratched after two first laborious tests: a victory at the siren in the first (32-29), a defeat in extremis in the second (12-13) with a team completely turned upside down. On Saturday, South Africa washed away the affront by winning (30-14) at the end of the summer tour against Wales.
This time, coach Jacques Nienaber had recalled the executives, his world champions who had been without a week earlier. Without regret, despite the criticism, as he explained before the meeting: “We could have chosen to be conservative to win the series straight away, but we now have answers on the 42 players and that was our objective”.
A shattering ename
It was still necessary to win the beautiful face of the Welsh who, themselves, lined up three times a fifteen type almost immutable in the hope of creating the feat. Criticized therefore, the reigning world champions had decided to set the record straight and attack the match foot to the floor. They spent the first quarter of an hour in the 22 Welsh, chaining their game to a powerful pass to asphyxiate their opponent.
The Welsh had to resist, bend their backs, asking for the video for two tries refused, they ended up transferring to a try from Handre Pollard (14th) concluding an intense phase of domination where the second row -Etzebeth, the only player to having started the three tests which celebrated at home in Cape Town his 100th selection and De Jager-sounded the charge. The Boks did it again just before the break with a second try from hooker Mbonambi on a carried ball.
Led 17-8 at half-time, the Welsh did well nonetheless, remaining at fifteen thanks to the leniency of the referee while, caught by the throat, they chained the faults in their camp (8 reported in 25 minutes). And because Refffell had reduced the score on the only Welsh incursion into the South African camp (18th) after an action showing that, when they have the ambition – too rarely – the Welsh know how to bring the ball to life.
We don’t change a competing team, we don’t change strategy either. That of the Welsh on this tour was clear: turn around, stay in the match on the score by imposing a false rhythm and let go at the end of the match, find Adams as in the second test where the winger had scored the try that had changed everything and allowed a first historic success in South Africa.
Wayne Pivac’s players applied it once again, returning to three points by the foot of Biggar with half an hour remaining. But the Boks, serious, involved, disciplined continued their work of undermining, their physical and collective domination materialized by a powerful try from Kolisi (53rd). And this time Adams was stopped dead in his lane by Mapimpi (70th) before Pollard killed all hope of a return with two defeats (30-14).