Springboks edge England in thriller

2014-11-15 19:39

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South Africa returned to winning ways with a 31-28 victory over England at Twickenham today.

England, 20-6 down early in the second half, capitalised on the sin-binning of Victor Matfield to score 14 points while the veteran lock was off the field as forwards David Wilson and Ben Morgan rumbled over for converted tries to tie the match at 20-20.

But the Springboks, still a man down, regained their composure to score a try through man-of-the-match Schalk Burger, while impressive fly-half Pat Lambie kicked 16 points in total.

“Conditions were tricky to begin with, but at 20-6 up we felt we had the job 75% done,” Burger told Sky Sports.

“We needed to keep composure then sadly we got a yellow card and we were on the back foot,” the openside flanker added.

“But, we huddled together and said, ‘we’ve been here before’ and that’s what saw us through.”

It was England’s second agonising three-point loss in as many weeks following their 24-21 defeat by world champions New Zealand but they could have few complaints.

Fresh from their shock tour-opening 29-15 defeat by Ireland in Dublin, the Springboks made it 12 games unbeaten against England as more doubts were raised about the ability of the 2015 World Cup hosts to challenge for the Webb Ellis Trophy.

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