In a historic moment, the South African rugby team secured their fourth Rugby World Cup title today, defeating New Zealand 12-11 in the finals of the 2023 World Cup in France. This epic victory in the heart of Paris marks a monumental achievement for the Springboks, establishing them as the first team to capture four world titles.
In a historic moment, the South African rugby team secured their fourth Rugby World Cup title today, defeating New Zealand 12-11 in the finals of the 2023 World Cup in France. This epic victory in the heart of Paris marks a monumental achievement for the Springboks, establishing them as the first team to capture four world titles. Handre Pollard’s accuracy was on full display as he converted four penalties during the first half (at 03, 13, 19, and 34 minutes), propelling the Springboks to yet another narrow victory, their third consecutive one, even though they played with a numerical advantage for more than 40 minutes.
Their journey began with a challenging group stage, where they emerged as the runners-up in Group B after a hard-fought match against Ireland (13-8). In the knockout rounds, the Springboks left France (29-28) behind in the quarter-finals and narrowly overcame England (16-15) in the semi-finals.
Today, at the iconic Stade de France, the South Africans gained a numerical advantage from the outset, with Shannon Frizell receiving a yellow card just two minutes into the game. The advantage became more pronounced with the expulsion of Sam Cane (27) when South Africa was already leading 9-3, though they couldn’t establish a substantial lead.
Adversity seemed to unite the All Blacks, who kept the score close at halftime (6-12), thanks to Richie Mo’unga’s two successful penalties (17, 38), countering Pollard’s precise kicking.
The All Blacks relentlessly sought to capitalize on the 20 minutes during which they had an equal number of players on the field, following yellow cards for South Africans Siya Kolisi (45) and Cheslin Kolbe (73). It was during a moment of numerical disadvantage that they managed to score the only try of the match, courtesy of Beauden Barrett (58). Unfortunately, Mo’unga couldn’t convert, and Jordie Barrett (73) failed to turn Kolbe’s yellow card into points, allowing the All Blacks to compete on equal footing during the final minutes.
Nonetheless, South Africa maintained their pragmatic style and successfully held onto their lead, ensuring their top spot in the world rankings.
The Springboks have now earned the right to proudly adorn a fourth star alongside their emblem, adding the 2023 title to their illustrious victories in 1995, 2007, and 2019.
This triumph marks the conclusion of the 2023 Rugby World Cup in France, which commenced on September 8th, captivating rugby fans around the globe.
Portugal made their second appearance at the World Cup, showcasing remarkable skills and determination in their four matches. The Portuguese squad, composed of seasoned and skilled players, all making their Rugby World Cup debut, left a lasting impact. Two unforgettable moments will be etched in history – their remarkable draw against Georgia, securing their first RWC point, and their thrilling 24-23 victory against Fiji, marking Portugal’s inaugural RWC win.
As we look ahead to the future of rugby, it’s worth noting that the next edition of the World Cup is set to take place in 2027 in Australia. This tournament promises to be unique as it will feature a record-breaking 24 teams for the very first time, opening up exciting new possibilities for the sport. Rugby enthusiasts can look forward to even more thrilling and competitive matches as the world of rugby continues to evolve.