Saturday, September 6, 2014

SOUTH AFRICA v AUSTRALIA: Rugby Championship and Mandela Cup


Venue: Patersons Stadium, Perth

Referee: George Clancy (Ireland)

Australia, whose scrum was demolished by the All Blacks two weeks ago, can expect another tough day up front when they face South Africa in Perth. Outclassed up front by Argentina two weeks ago (virtually a hanging offense in the republic) South Africa will be out to prove the pundits wrong about their ‘weak’ front five.

The South Africa scrum. No excuses accepted this Saturday.
Image thanks to

Australia is not without their problems. Hooker has been a headache position for coach McKenzie as he is down to hooker number 4 to start because of injuries. In addition to a scrum that can be very wobbly the coach has revamped his backline with proven Super Rugby combinations.

Of the two Rugby Championship games this Saturday this could well be the closest. There is certainly a lot more at stake. If Australia lose that could well be the end of any Rugby Championship victory in 2014. South Africa will need to win well as they are two bonus points behind competition hot favourites New Zealand.

Last Five Encounters
28.09.2013 South Africa 28-8 in Capetown (Rugby Champ., Mandela Cup)
07.09.2013 South Africa 38-12 in Brisbane (Rugby Champ., Mandela Cup)
29.09.2012 South Africa 31-8 in Pretoria (Rugby Champ., Mandela Cup)
08.09.2012 Australia 26-19 in Perth (Rugby Champ., Mandela Cup)
09.10.2011 Australia 11-9 in Wellington (World Cup, Quarter-Final)

South Africa has dominated Australia in their last three outings. However Australia won the last time these two teams clashed in Perth and who can forget the shock of Australia eliminating the Springbok at the 2011 Rugby World Cup?

South Africa Last Five P 5, W 5
23.08.2014 v Argentina W 33-31 in Salta (Rugby Championship)
16.08.2014 v Argentina W 13-6 in Pretoria (Rugby Championship)
28.06.2014 v Scotland W 55-6 in Port Elizabeth
21.06.2014 v Wales W 31-30 in Nelspruit
14.06.2014 v Wales W 38-16 in Durban 

Australia Last Five P 5, W 3, D 1, L 1
23.08.2014 v New Zealand L 20-51 in Sydney (Rugby Champ., Bledisloe Cup)16.08.2014 v New Zealand D 12-12 in Sydney (Bledisloe Cup; Rugby Champ.)
21.06.2014 v France W 39-13 in Sydney
14.06.2014 v France W 6-0 in Melbourne
07.06.2014 v France W 50-23 in Brisbane


GWC Rugby Rankings
World Table: Australia 2nd, South Africa 3rd

IRB Ranking Points
South Africa 89.34, Australia 87.19

All rankings here at

Prediction: South Africa by 5 points


15 Israel Folau, 14 Adam Ashley-Cooper, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Matthew Toomua, 11 Robert Horne, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Nicholas Phipps, 8 Wycliff Palu, 7 Michael Hooper (Capt.), 6 Scott Fardy, 5 Robert Simmons, 4 Samuel Carter, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 James Hanson, 1 James Slipper.
16 Saia Fainga'a, 17 Pek Cowan, 18 Ben Alexander, 19 James Horwill,
20 Scott Higginbotham, 21 Matthew Hodgson, 22 Nicholas White, 23 Kurtley Beale.
Head Coach: Ewan McKenzie

South Africa
15 Wilhelm le Roux, 14 Cornal Hendricks, 13 Jan Serfontein, 12 Jean de Villiers (Capt.), 11 Bryan Habana, 10 Morne Steyn, 9 Ruan Pienaar, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Marcell Coetzee, 6 Francois Louw, 5 Victor Matfield, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Adriaan Strauss, 1 Tendai Mtawarira.
16 Bismarck du Plessis, 17 Trevor Nyakane, 18 Marcel van der Merwe, 19 Lood de Jager, 20 Warren Whiteley, 21 Francois Hougaard, 22 Patrick Lambie,
23 Damian de Allende.
Head Coach: Heyneke Meyer

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