Shaun Goosen looks back at this past weekend's rugby action which saw the Boks and Pumas lose out in the Rugby Championship while the Bulls claimed the Currie Cup title.
Springboks are their own worst enemy in Gold Coast defeat
South Africa fell 26-28 to Australia in the third round of the Rugby Championship on the Gold Coast on Sunday. The Boks only had themselves to blame, with four missed kicks and a litany of moments of ill-discipline eventually costing them a first win on Aussie soil since 2013. For the Wallabies, recalled veteran Quade Cooper was the hero as he kicked eight out of eight for a personal points-tally of 23 — including the winner after the 80th-minute — to seal the deal for Dave Rennie’s side.
Each team was issued with two yellow cards apiece in a match that lacked quality in some respects. The world champions will have another shot at claiming a rare Wallaby scalp at the Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane this weekend but will need a much-improved showing if they are to beat the All Blacks later on in the championship.
New Zealand blank Argentina
The All Blacks beat Argentina 39-0 on the Gold Coast on Sunday in a comprehensive win for Ian Foster and his team. New Zealand were without a number of key players and even had influential centre Anton Lienert-Brown ruled out late after initially being named to start, but the Bledisloe Cup winners still managed to take their chances and totally outplay a Los Pumas side that lacked imagination and effectiveness with ball in hand.
With two Tests against the Springboks on the horizon, the result is a big one for New Zealand who have now claimed bonus points in all three of their Rugby Championship matches so far this season. They are sitting pretty at the summit of the standings and are in pole position to win a seventh title in the nine years of the competition’s existence.
Bulls exact record win over Sharks
The Bulls won their second Currie Cup title of the year when they claimed a comprehensive 44-10 win over the Sharks at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday. The 34-point winning margin is the largest in the 129-year history of the competition. In spite of the absence of star flyhalf Johan Goosen, Jake White’s men never looked likely to let up in a dominant 80-minute display that underlined just how competitive they will be in the upcoming United Rugby Championship.
For the Sharks, there is still plenty to work on but the addition of experienced campaigners like Ruan Pienaar and Ben Tapuai will serve to lift the side as they prepare for their URC debut against Munster at Thomond Park on 25 September.