Aaron Smith to be recalled for All Blacks-Springboks Test
Sep 12 2017
On Saturday in Perth, however, it was the more traditional Springbok strengths of physicality and a strong set piece that were behind the rally from 10 points down early in the second half to rescue a 23-23 draw with Australia in the Rugby Championship.
Bernard Foley nailed a clutch 40-metre penalty with nine minutes to go to level the scores, and the Wallabies smothered an after-the-siren drop-goal attempt from Elton Jantjies to deny South Africa victory.
"Missed opportunity there", Wallabies captain Michael Hooper said.
"We're all looking for that win, it's been a while and obviously we wanted to win on the weekend but we didn't get the result so we'll dust off and go again. Credit to the South Africans, they managed to grind and put the pressure on us". Next week they host Argentina in Canberra.
The Wallabies had been making plenty of breaks but were being outmuscled at the breakdown and it was from one of a string of turnovers that the Springboks scored the first try in the 26th minute.
"At 20-10 up, we should have gone on with that", Australia coach Michael Cheika said.
Uelese was on far earlier than expected when top hooker Tatafu Polota-Nau copped a poke in the eye and required a concussion test on the sidelines before the 20-minute mark.
The lead was short-lived: Israel Folau won back Australia's restart, and Beale produced a dodge-and-weave run to touch down for a try.
Moore and Polota-Nau have been influential for Uelese, and the latter was quick to lavish praise on the potential heir to the Wallabies' hooking spot. "I am, however, satisfied with the overall performance ... the team showed great character in their fightback".
The Wallabies and Springboks drew for just the second time in the history of their 84-game rivalry on Saturday night after the home side coughed up a 10-point lead in Perth - but they were ultimately fortunate to escape with a share of the spoils.
"He hasn't started a game of Super Rugby and he's come in for 20 minutes of global footy".
A reflection of their new-found confidence came when coach Allister Coetzee, who oversaw losses in eight of 12 Tests past year, said the team would not be happy with a draw even away from home against the twice former World Cup winners. "We've seen the last couple of weeks how physical they've been, especially up front". We had to work on a couple of things and we nearly pulled it off.