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Beauden Barrett Rugby World Cup 2019: Defending champions New Zealand make statement of intent with hard-fought win over South Africa

Beauden Barrett Rugby World Cup 2019: Defending champions New Zealand make statement of intent with hard-fought win over South Africa

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  • Beauden Barrett Defending champions New Zealand burnished their credentials as favourites for the Rugby World Cup with a hard-fought 23-13 win against top contenders South Africa in a blockbuster match in Yokohama on Saturday

  • Beauden Barrett The impressive All Blacks cut the Springboks to ribbons during a five-minute period of dominance in the first half that earned them two converted tries, and then saw off a determined second-half fightback to register the vital Pool B win

  • Beauden Barrett South Africa’s reputed staunch defence was exposed by 26 missed tackles in the first half as the All Blacks’ pace proved too much

Yokohama: Defending champions New Zealand burnished their credentials as favourites for the Rugby World Cup with a hard-fought 23-13 win against top contenders South Africa in a blockbuster match in Yokohama on Saturday.

Beauden Barrett  Rugby World Cup 2019: Defending champions New Zealand make statement of intent with hard-fought win over South Africa

New Zealand players applaud fans after the win. AFP

The impressive All Blacks cut the Springboks to ribbons during a five-minute period of dominance in the first half that earned them two converted tries, and then saw off a determined second-half fightback to register the vital Pool B win.

Before nearly 64,000 fans in Yokohama’s International Stadium, the All Blacks set the game alight with the sensational scoring spree which was against the early run of play.

Until then the Springboks had enjoyed a huge territorial advantage but were unable to cross the line and had to rely on an early Handre Pollard penalty for their only points in the first half.

In a frantically paced second half, they came within one try of regaining the lead before late penalties made the game safe for New Zealand.

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