Springboks are the 2019 Rugby World Cup champions after beating England 32-12 in Saturday’s tournament final in Yokohama.
The Boks went into the match as slight underdogs, but they were superb from start to finish as they dominated almost every department against an English outfit that could not repeat its heroic semi-final performance against the All Blacks.
Flyhalf Handre Pollard slotted six penalties and two conversions for a personal haul of 22 points, but the match-winning moment for South Africa came in the 65th minute when wing Makazole Mapimpi scored.
There was also a try for Cheslin Kolbe, who danced his way towards the line in the 74th minute to put the game to bed.
It is South Africa’s third World Cup crown having won the showpiece in 1995 and 2007 and they now join the All Blacks as the most successful side in World Cup history.
It didn’t help that they lost prop Kyle Sinckler early on to a head injury, but the English pack was destroyed by the South Africans throughout at both set piece and in open play.
The Boks simply wanted it more, and they had manufactured a 12-6 lead by half-time thanks to four Handre Pollard penalties to just two from England captain Owen Farrell.
England did have periods of sustained attack in that opening half, but they were met by a South African defence that was immense.
The South African scrum, in particular, was a massive weapon for the Boks as the English front row buckled.
The Boks did lose hooker Bongo Mbonambi (head knock) and Lood de Jager (shoulder), but the quality of their bench has been one of the hallmarks of South Africa’s campaign in 2019 and that was the case once more on Saturday.
In the end, the Boks were simply more clinical than their opposition.
The Boks had carved out an 18-12 lead before the magical moment came where they put the came to bed.
Mapimpi made the break down the left flank before he chipped ahead for Lukhanyo Am to gather and return the pass back inside to Mapimpi, who scored the all-important try as South Africa erupted.