The Springboks recorded a comfortable 47-13 win over the World XV at DHL Newlands on Saturday, running in six tries in the process as they started their 2014 season in fine style.
The Boks led 18-13 at half-time but opened the floodgates in the second half in front of just over 30,000 people at DHL Newlands.
Former DHL Stormers star Bryan Habana scored the Boks’ first try in the 16th minute, whilst hooker Bismarck du Plessis scored a try double as the Men in Green & Gold ran in six tries on the day.
However, the loudest cheer of the night was reserved for another Newlands crowd favourite, Schalk Burger, who replaced Willem Alberts in the 60th minute.
It was the inspirational Burger’s first appearance for South Africa since October 2011, after injury and illness kept him sidelined for over a year.
Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer was pleased with his team’s convincing victory.
However, Meyer warned that next week’s Test match in Durban – against Wales – will be another big step-up for his team.
“Wales will be well prepared,” said Meyer. “They are a quality side with big backs which will give them go forward ball. They also played together in the Six Nations, while we are just starting out.”
The coach was happy with a number of aspects of his team’s play and feels they will be much better prepared with another week of training.
“This match was important to us, because we have to play together as a team to become better.
“I believe we are a very dangerous team when we play with quick ball and that was something that I was unhappy about at the break. I had some harsh words for the players about the penalties conceded in the first half.
“In the second half we applied ourselves better at the breakdown and we scored some very good tries. To score six, seven tries against a side with the quality of this World XV is very pleasing.”
For South Africa:
Tries: Habana, Botha, Du Plessis 2, Goosen, Le Roux
Cons: Steyn 2, Goosen 2
Pens: Steyn 3
For the World XV:
Pens: O’Connor 2
South Africa: 15 Willie le Roux, 14 Cornal Hendricks, 13 JP Pietersen, 12 Frans Steyn, 11 Bryan Habana, 10 Morné Steyn, 9 Ruan Pienaar, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Willem Alberts, 6 Francois Louw, 5 Victor Matfield (captain), 4 Bakkies Botha, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Bismarck du Plessis, 1 Tendai Mtawarira.
Replacements: 16 Schalk Brits, 17 Gurthrö Steenkamp, 18 Coenie Oosthuizen, 19 Flip van der Merwe, 20 Schalk Burger, 21 Fourie du Preez, 22 Johan Goosen, 23 Lwazi Mvovo.
World XV: 15 James O’Connor, 14 Drew Mitchell, 13 Rene Ranger, 12 Wynand Olivier, 11 Hosea Gear, 10 Matt Giteau (captain), 9 Rory Kockott, 8 Roger Wilson, 7 Steffon Armitage, 6 Mamuka Gorgodze, 5 Alistair Hargreaves, 4 Juandré Kruger, 3 Carl Hayman, 2 Craig Burden, 1 Sona Taumalolo.
Replacements: 16 Andrew Hore, 17 Schalk Ferreira, 18 Pat Cilliers, 19 Joe Tekori, 20 Alexandre Lapandry, 21 Jimmy Cowan, 22 François Trinh-Duc, 23 Benson Stanley.
Referee: George Clancy (Ireland)
Assistant referees: Lourens van der Merwe (South Africa), Quinton Immelman (South Africa)
TMO: Deon van Blommestein (South Africa)