Blasts from the past: Matfield dots down in Boks’ last dash
Today in SA sports history: July 12
1980 — The Springboks, already 3-0 up in the series against the British and Irish Lions, lose the fourth and final Test 13-17 at Loftus Versfeld. The visitors were worthy victors, outscoring the hosts three tries to one. Centre Willie du Plessis scored SA’s only try, with flyhalf Naas Botha adding one penalty and then being relieved of the kicking duties before fullback Gysie Pienaar added two more penalties. Fullback Andy Irvine, flank John O’Driscoll and prop Clive Williams scored for the Lions, with flyhalf Ollie Campbell kicking one conversion and a penalty.
2003 — The calm before the storm. The Springboks score their last victory against a major side in what will go down as a poor season. Lock Victor Matfield and substitute Brent Russell scored two tries as the Boks beat Australia 26-22 at Newlands. The visitors, however, won the try-count 3-2, dotting down through wingers Joe Roff and Wendell Sailor and flank Phil Waugh. Australia went on to make the final of the World Cup on home soil later that year and SA didn’t make a dent. ..
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