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South Africa too strong Scotland at Murrayfield

Adriaan Strauss scored two tries for South Africa

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Article Published: Saturday 17 November 2012

South Africa followed up their win over Ireland last week with a 10-21 victory over Scotland at Murrayfield.

The Springboks overcame Ireland the week before with a second-half comeback, but did all the necessary work within the first 50 minutes on Saturday, mincing Scotland to lead 21-3 after 47 minutes.

Hooker Adriaan Strauss scored both of the Springboks' tries and Pat Lambie kicked over 11 points.

Their domination of proceedings ended with the result certain and the arrival of replacement scrumhalf Henry Pyrgos, who inspired Scotland with the try that helped them to restore a little pride.

The Scots expected the physical battering but by the time they could match it the game was gone.

"It was not a great game but I'll take an ugly win," South Africa coach Heyneke Meyer said.

"We know we can play much better but we mustn't take anything away from Scotland.

"They came out and gave everything for their country. I think they can be proud of what they achieved today.

"We're in a learning curve and I thought the guys didn't panic. Our defence was awesome. To keep them out at the end, it really showed the character of this young team."

Lambie kicked South Africa to a 6-3 lead, and his kick for touch in the 20th minute gave South Africa an attacking lineout. South Africa didn't disappoint, mauling from the lineout to the posts. Strauss dived in for his first test try.

Lambie converted and knocked over a penalty for 14-3.

Scotland was dealt a blow when lock Richie Gray walked off with a concussion. He was replaced by Al Kellock, who ended a Scotland chance on South Africa's tryline just before halftime when he was penalised for holding onto the ball too long.

South Africa started the new half as it ended the second, with all the pressure.

But Scotland scrumhalf Mike Blair wasn't in any trouble in the 46th when his wayward pass was snared by Strauss who scooted in from 40 metres out without being touched.

Blair was replaced by Pyrgos as Lambie converted, and he turned around Scotland's fortunes with his try in the 51st.

Scotland opted to kick for touch rather than take a penalty, and captain Kelly Brown took the lineout catch and passed in the air to Pyrgos to run in untouched.

Scotland finally fired up, but its failure to score came down to poor decisions and some desperate defence.

Lock Jim Hamilton got over the line but was pushed back. The Scots received the put-in to a five-meter scrum only to blow it with an early engagement.

An attacking lineout was ruined when Ross Ford didn't throw in straight, and another scrum chance was over when Scotland was penalized for collapsing it.

Scotland kept creating chances, however, but replacement Ruaridh Jackson decided to kick from 10 metres out and South Africa easily shut down that chance.

South Africa was happy to concede penalties which referee George Clancy finally tired of when he sent replacement lock Flip van der Merwe to the sin-bin with three minutes to go.

Even then, Scotland flanker Dave Denton almost went over, and winger Tim Visser couldn't hold a decisive pass from Jackson.

"We've got a lot to learn," Scotland coach Andy Robinson said. "A lot to learn in improving defence and also in attack, particularly physically. I felt they bullied us a little in the first half."

"The disappointing thing from our side is we allowed a side to get a lead again and that's something you can't afford to do. But I thought South Africa defended superbly well. If they hadn't defended as well as they had, it could have been a different story."

Final Score Scotland 10 (3) South Africa 21 (14)


Tries: Pyrgos
Penalties: Laidlaw
Conversions: Laidlaw

South Africa
Tries: Strauss 2
Penalties: Lambie 3
Conversions: Lambie

Referee: George Clancy (IRL)

Teams (15-1)


Stuart Hogg; Sean Lamont, Nick de Luca, Matt Scott, Tim Visser; Greig Laidlaw, Mike Blair; David Denton, John Barclay, Kelly Brown (capt); Jim Hamilton, Richie Gray; Euan Murray, Ross Ford, Ryan Grant

Replacements: Dougie Hall, Kyle Traynor, Geoff Cross, Alastair Kellock, Henry Pyrgos, Ruaridh Jackson, Peter Murchie, Stuart McInally

South Africa

Zane Kirchner; JP Pietersen, Juan de Jongh, Jean de Villiers (capt), Francois Hougaard; Pat Lambie, Ruan Pienaar; Duane Vermeulen, Willem Alberts, Francois Louw; Juandre Kruger, Eben Etzebeth; Jannie du Plessis, Adriaan Strauss, Gurthro Steenkamp

Replacements: Schalk Brits, Heinke van der Merwe, CJ van der Linde, Flip van der Merwe, Marcell Coetzee, Morne Steyn, Jaco Taute, Lwazi Mvovo

Rugby Championship Standings
Nation Games Points    
1. Australia 3 3 0 0 85 48 37 1 13
2. New Zealand 3 2 1 0 85 65 20 1 9
3. Argentina 3 1 2 0 64 98 -34 1 5
4. South Africa 3 0 3 0 65 88 -23 2 2
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