Pieter-Steph du Toit cries tears of joy alongside RG Snyman, Tendai Mtawarira and Cheslin Kolbe after the Springboks beat the All Blacks in Wellington. Photo: Ross Setford/Reuters
Pieter-Steph du Toit cries tears of joy alongside RG Snyman, Tendai Mtawarira and Cheslin Kolbe after the Springboks beat the All Blacks in Wellington. Photo: Ross Setford/Reuters
Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus was all smiles after the final whistle in Wellington on Saturday. Photo: John Cowpland/AP
Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus was all smiles after the final whistle in Wellington on Saturday. Photo: John Cowpland/AP

CAPE TOWN – President Cyril Ramaphosa says the Springboks “showed true character from start to finish” in beating the All Blacks in Wellington.

The Boks pulled off a famous 36-34 Rugby Championship victory at the Westpac Stadium in Wellington on Saturday.

It was their first ever win over the All Blacks at that stadium, and their first over their arch-rivals in New Zealand since 2009.

The South Africans scored five tries to the six of the Kiwis, but it was flyhalf Handre Pollard’s accurate goal-kicking that proved to be the difference as New Zealand No 10 Beauden Barrett missed a number of attempts at goal.

“A job very well done by our Springboks for the fierce fight and victory against the tough All Blacks,” Ramaphosa tweeted.

“The determination you demonstrated today, away from home, is beyond fulfilling. Our team showed true character from start to finish. Continue to fly the flag, you make us proud.”

Deputy Minister of Sport and Recreation Gert Oosthuizen added: “So proud of our Springboks - well done!!”

Record Springbok try-scorer Bryan Habana also celebrated the victory afterwards, posting on social media: “5 tries against the ABs in New Zealand. 1st Bok win NZ since 2009. 1st Bok win in Wellington since 1998 Highest score against NZ in NZ. I don’t care how much of a doubter or naysayer you are, you have to be impressed with that win! Well done @Springboks #immenselyproud”

Former captains John Smit and Bob Skinstad were also beside with emotion.

Smit tweeted: “I’m emotionally drained after that special test match but man it’s worth it when the @Springboks play like that!!! Super proud!!!”, while Skinstad said: “29% possession, but 221 tackles and Five tries against the All Blacks - probably the greatest victory there, ever. Brilliant Springboks, almost cried with joy !! #greatestgame #loverugby”

Breyton Paulse remembered the courageous tackle by Cheslin Kolbe on Rieko Ioane, after the All Black wing had earlier handed-off Kolbe to score.

“Amongst all the chaos,no one is talking bout that Cheslin-tackle on Ioane,2 meters from our line,where’s the haters who said he is too small??Im not gonna explain myself everytime,if your heart is big,you big enough,I Thank You!”

The Boks will arrive at OR Tambo International Airport at around 5.30pm on Sunday.

 

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