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Habana brace helps South Africa to Samoan victory

Bryan Habana scored his 49th and 50th try for South Africa

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Article Published: Saturday 22 June 2013

South Africa's Springboks scored eight tries on their way to a 56-23 Test victory over Samoa to win a four Nation Rugby tournament in South Africa.

South Africa were the only unbeaten team in a Quad Nations tournament featuring the hosts South Africa, Samoa, Scotland and Italy.

The Springboks have now played Samoa seven times in International Test matches and won all seven. Four out of the seven matches were at home and the rest were world cup matches as the Springboks have never visited Samoa on tour.

Samoan back Alesana Tuilagi was shown a Red card for a high tackle on Springboks captain Jean de Villiers after which the Springboks ran in in tries almost with ease.

The Springboks made up for last week's lacklustre performance against Scotland in the final of the four-nation Series.

The addition of Francois Louw and Willem Alberts to the forward pack added some grunt as they made strong runs with the ball in hand and on attack.

Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer this week said their struggles against Scotland were due to a lack of quick ball.

The South Africans made up for it in abundance against Samoa which translated into the eight tries they scored on the evening.

Samoa took the game to South Africa from the word go as they attacked the gainline with speed and intensity but the Springboks were up to the task on defence.

Despite two early handling errors, fullback Willie le Roux played a pivotal role for South Africa on attack as he regained his confidence.

Le Roux had a hand in all the tries as he came into the line at speed and set up the players on his outside with well-weighted passes.

South Africa opened the scoring with flyhalf Morne Steyn converting a penalty three minutes of the match.

The Springbok pivot had another opportunity at the uprights five minutes later, but his kick was not on target.

Samoa levelled the scores in the 11th minute when fullback James So'oialo succeeded with his kick at goal. Four minutes later, he lined up another penalty to hand his side the lead.

Winger Bryan Habana claimed the first try, scoring at the far side of the field as the ball was spread wide from maul, with Steyn converting (10-6).

The try provided the spark which saw the Boks play with greater freedom.

They were clinical at the breakdowns, allowing quick ball to the backline which looked dangerous every time the ball went wide.

In the 25th minute, South Africa's driving maul from a lineout again paid dividends as Louw controlled the ball from the back of the maul to score.

Steyn converted the try to extend the lead to 17-6.

The Samoans were left a man short when Logovi'I Mulipola was yellow-carded for the repeated offence of coming in from the side at ruck time.

In the 10 minutes he was sidelined, South Africa added a penalty conversion and a try as JJ Engelbrecht showed great individual skill for his five-pointer in the 33rd minute.

The outside centre survived three tackles and sidestepped another to get over the advantage line and score with Steyn's conversion missing the target (25-9).

Shortly before half-time, Bok winger Bjorn Basson scored the fourth try of the evening when he received a skip pass from Le Roux to touch down in the left-hand corner.

Steyn converted giving South Africa a 32-9 advantage at break.

Samoa finally opened their try-scoring account in the 47th minute, after taking a tap penalty allowing lock Teofilo Paulo to go over and So'oialo converting (32-16).

The tourists suffered another debilitating blow when physical winger Alesana Tuilagi received a red card for a stiff arm tackle on Springbok captain Jean de Villiers.

A minute later, Habana scored a milestone 50th try for his country as Pienaar broke to the blindside, offloading to the winger who scored in the right-hand corner.

While Steyn's kick for the conversion went wide, he made up for it crossing the whitewash seven minutes later to extend the lead to 42-23.

Habana got on the wrong side of the law to be yellow-carded for a deliberate knockdown 10 minutes before the end of the match.

In his absence, Samoa scored their second try with Junior Poluleuligaga going over. Paul Williams converted to take the scores to 42-23.

South Africa finished strongly as Louw scored his brace in the 76th minute and Trevor Nyakane went over for his first five-pointer in the Bok jersey in the 80th minute.

Final Score South Africa 56 (32) Samoa 23 (9)


South Africa
Tries - Habana 2, Louw 2, Engelbrecht, Basson, Steyn, Nyakane
Pen - Steyn 2
Con - Steyn 3, Lambie 2
Drop -
Cards - Habana (Yellow)

Tries - Paulo, Poluleuligaga
Pen - So'oialo 3
Con - So'oialo, Williams
Drop -
Cards - Tuilagi (Red)

Match Officials
: Pascal Gauzere (FRA)


South Africa

Willie le Roux; Bryan Habana, JJ Engelbrecht, Jean de Villiers (capt), Bjorn Basson; Morne Steyn, Ruan Pienaar; Pierre Spies, Willem Alberts, Francois Louw; Flip van der Merwe, Eben Etzebeth; Jannie du Plessis, Adriaan Strauss, Tendai Mtawarira

Replacements: Bismarck du Plessis, Trevor Nyakane, Coenie Oosthuizen, Juandre Kruger, Siya Kolisi, Piet van Zyl, Patrick Lambie, Jan Serfontein


James So'oialo; Alapati Leiua, Paul Williams (capt), Johnny Leota, Alesana Tuilagi; Tusi Pisi, Jeremy Su'a; Taiasina Tuifu'a, Jack Lam, Ofisa Treviranus; Daniel Leo, Filo Paulo; Logovi'i Mulipola, Ole Avei, Sakaria Taulafo

Replacements: Ti'i Paulo, Census Johnston, James Johnston, Kane Thompson, Junior Poluleuligaga, Brando Va'aulu, Seilala Mapusua, Alafoti Fa'osiliva

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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