Boks break the curse

2013-09-08 14:00

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It’s time to party after first Brisbane win in 42 years, but challenge of All Blacks looms large.

If the Springboks ever needed to silence doubters about their Rugby Championship form on the road, they have gone a long way in keeping them quiet.

A 38-12 away win will keep any hater quiet and, at the end of the day, it was well deserved.

Anything less than a win would have been purgatory for Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer.

This crop of Wallabies is a shadow of what they used to be at the turn of the century.

They were there to be beaten and, thankfully, the Boks did it in style.

Just seven years ago, South Africa suffered their second-worst defeat when Australia put 49 points past them without reply at the same ground where the Springboks finally broke their 42-year hoodoo.

Revenge cannot and will never be sweeter and the Boks deserve all the kudos.

They played with passion, power, pace and precision to record their biggest victory against Australia in Australia.

Keeping a back line full of attacking talent scoreless takes a monumental effort, but whatever Springbok defence coach John McFarland said during the week translated into the best Bok defensive effort since the 2007 World Cup matches against England.

At times, the manner in which the Australian runners could not find gaps was akin to drunk men walking around blindfolded.

It was an accurate performance in all facets that will be difficult to match.

The All Blacks, who in all likelihood will be without their talismanic captain Richie McCaw, will be a different proposition at Eden Park in Auckland next week.

A 76-year bogey will have to be slayed and New Zealand are a far more superior team than the Wallabies.

Not much can be read from the All Blacks’ underwhelming 28-13 victory over Argentina in Hamilton yesterday, as the Pumas were in no mood to be walkovers.

But when faced with the prospect of a Springbok challenge, the inner beast of All Black rugby is awakened.

The Boks might be unbeaten this year, but they haven’t been able to string two good performances together.

If they are to beat New Zealand, they will have to triple, if not quadruple, their efforts.

New Zealand may have shown off their bench strength, but Argentina revealed vulnerabilities that would have pleased the Boks to no end.

But the All Blacks respond to bad performances very well.

Besides a 47-29 win against Australia in Sydney, where they ran the Wallabies off the park, the All Blacks have been more substance than style this year.

The Boks will have to turn up mentally, as the intimidating Eden Park atmosphere can overwhelm opponents.

Individually, most Bok players have tasted Super Rugby success at the ground, but test rugby is a different kettle of fish.

After the highs of 2009, the 32-12 defeat at the ground the following year was a rude awakening. That lesson in humility cannot be forgotten.

Boks bury Wallabies with third try

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