Courageous Springboks Lost To France And ……. ?


France welcomed the World Champions, the Springboks to Marseille and won a brilliant test match 30-26 to extend their winning record to 12 tests in a row.

Two red cards and a yellow card threatened to spoil the match, however, the Springboks responded brilliantly to challenge the French and kept the contest alive. Two late penalties against the Springboks during the last moments of the match had the Springboks fuming, unfortunately, to no effect.

Although France was the "better" team early in the first quarter, the red card of Pieter-Steph du Toit gave the French full control of the match. Two converted penalties and a converted try gave France an early lead of 13-00.

The Springboks surprised all with their attitude and grit as they took on their hosts physically and out wide. The Springboks scored a well-deserved try with France adding a converted penalty to lead 16-10 going into the second half.

A red card to France turned the tide completely in favour of the Springboks who were already performing with one man short. A try by the Springboks narrow the gap as both teams also traded penalties, giving the Springboks the lead for the first time in the match. The Springboks leading 23-22 with 20 minutes to go.

The last 20 minutes of this test were exciting and brutal and unfortunately for the Springboks they could not convert courage, grit and passion into a "deserved" win.

France: Tries: Cyril Baille, Sipili Falatea. Conversion: Thomas Ramos. Penalties: Thomas Ramos (6).
Sringboks: Tries: Siya Kolisi, Kurt-Lee Arendse. Conversions: Cheslin Kolbe, Faf de Klerk. Penalties: Cheslin Kolbe (2), Faf de Klerk, Damian Willemse.

As it happened:
02:07 Thomas Ramos converted an early penalty for France. (03-00)
11:30 Pieter-Steph du Toit (Springboks) was sent off with a red card.
16:56 Thomas Ramos converted his second penalty for France. (06-00)
20:23 Cyril Baille scored France's first try. France are in complete control of the match as they launch wave after waves of attacks on the struggling 14 men Springboks. (13-00)
25:28 Cheslin Kolbe converted a penalty for the Springboks. (13-03)
29:26 Siya Kolisi scored the Springboks' first try from the back of a dominant 5m lineout-maul. (13-10)
40:37 Thomas Ramos converted the third penalty for France. (16-10)
42:59 Cheslin Kolbe converted a penalty for the Springboks. (16-13)
45:43 Thomas Ramos converted a penalty for France. (19-13)
47:57 Antoine Dupont (France) was sent off with a red card.
50:44 Kurt-Lee Arendse scored the Springboks' second try in the corner. The Springboks' tails are up and is seemingly in control of the match. (19-20)
55:36 Faf de Klerk converted a penalty for the Springboks. (19-23)
59:00 Thomas Ramos converted the fifth penalty for France. (22-23)
63:51 Damian Willemse converted a penalty for the Springboks. (22-26)
69:54 Deon Fourie (Springboks) was sent off with a yellow card.
73:25 Sipili Falatea scored France's second try after bulldozing his way over the Springboks' tryline. (27-26)
78:38 Thomas Ramos converted a penalty for France. (30-26)


France: 15. Thomas Ramos; 14. Damian Penaud, 13. Gael Fickou, 12. Jonathan Danty, 11. Yoram Moefana, 10. Romain Ntamack, 9. Antoine Dupont (c), 8. Gregory Alldritt, 7. Charles Ollivon, 6. Anthony Jelonch, 5. Thibaud Flament, 4. Cameron Woki, 3. Uini Atonio, 2. Julien Marchand, 1. Cyril Baille. Replacement: 16. Peato Mauvaka, 17. Reda Wardi, 18. Sipili Falatea, 19. Romain Taofifenua, 20. Bastien Chalureau, 21. Sekou Macalou, 22. Maxime Lucu, 23. Matthieu Jalibert.

Springboks: 15. Willie le Roux, 14. Cheslin Kolbe, 13. Jesse Kriel, 12. Damian de Allende, 11. Kurt-Lee Arendse, 10. Damian Willemse, 9. Faf de Klerk, 8. Kwagga Smith, 7. Pieter-Steph du Toit, 6. Siya Kolisi (c), 5. Franco Mostert, 4. Eben Etzebeth, 3. Frans Malherbe, 2. Bongi Mbonambi, 1. Ox Nche. Replacements: 16. Malcolm Marx, 17. Steven Kitshoff, 18. Vincent Koch, 19. Marvin Orie, 20. Deon Fourie, 21. Cobus Reinach, 22. Manie Libbok, 23 Makazole Mapimpi.