WELLINGTON – South Africa will be looking to repeat last year’s feat when they defeated New Zealand for the first time at Wellington's Wespac Stadium.
The All Blacks and the Springboks do battle in a Rugby Championship clash at Wellington on Saturday, with the South Africans still remembering last year’s epic 36-34 victory over their arch-rivals at this venue.
This is the same venue where the South Africans lost a Rugby World Cup quarter-final against Australia in 2011.
For the All Blacks, though, the venue won’t hold too many good memories because, in that defeat to the Boks on September 15 last year, no NZ team had previously conceded 36 points against any opposition at home.
The five tries the All Blacks conceded was also a record against South Africa at this venue.
Springbok wing Aphiwe Dyantyi will, however, have fond memories of the match as his two tries in that match was the first time a player had scored a double against the All Blacks since Ray Mordt’s hat-trick at Eden Park in Auckland in 1981.
As the Boks go into Saturday’s match, they have won once and lost six times in seven games against the All Blacks at this venue.
The South Africans won’t lack for experience, with the starting team having a total of 457 Test caps.
Eben Etzebeth is the third-most capped lock with 77 Test matches, behind Victor Matfield (127) and Bakkies Botha (85).
As for the match officials on Saturday, the referee is Nic Berry of Australia and he will be assisted by Angus Gardner of Australia and Shuhei Kubo of Japan. Rowan Kitt (England) is the television match official (TMO).
This will be Berry’s 10th Test match as a referee, but his first involving South Africa.
African News Agency (ANA)