Boks back at top

DUNEDIN - South Africa cemented their place on top of the rugby world at the weekend when they added a historic away win over the All Blacks to their World Cup glory.

DUNEDIN - South Africa cemented their place on top of the rugby world at the weekend when they added a historic away win over the All Blacks to their World Cup glory.

The come-from-behind 30-28 victory in the second Tri-Nations Test saw the Springboks leap over New Zealand to regain the world No 1 ranking they conceded in losing the opening encounter the previous week.

They also brought the All Blacks' world record of 30 home wins to an end and recorded their first-ever victory at Dunedin's Carisbrook ground - known as the "House of Pain" because it is a notorious graveyard for visiting teams.

That they managed to score the winning points with a piece of Ricky Januarie magic in the last five minutes, and when down to only 14 men, bore testimony to their champion qualities.

South Africa scored two tries, to JP Pietersen late in the first half and Januarie at the end, while replacement backrower Sione Lauki scored the only try for New Zealand.

The remainder of the points came from the boot in a match where both coaches had impressed on their players the need for discipline.

For South Africa, Percy Montgomery kicked three penalties, Butch James kicked two plus a drop goal, and Francois Steyn added the telling conversion of Januarie's try.

Point-scoring machine Dan Carter kicked six penalties for the All Blacks plus a conversion and a drop goal.

"We were very disappointed with our performance last weekend and we knew we had to work on a lot of things," said Victor Matfield, sin-binned with eight minutes remaining and the Springboks behind by five points.

The errors and misplaced kicks from the first Test were gone as they fronted the All Blacks with a combination of watertight defence and a structured attacking game that forced the All Blacks into the corners.

But the win came at a cost, with hooker Bismarck du Plessis later suspended for three weeks after he admitted at a judicial hearing that his fist "made contact" around the eye area of All Blacks flanker Adam Thomson. - Sapa-AFP

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