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The Springboks booked a place in the Rugby World Cup semifinals with a hard-fought 37-20 win over Fiji in Marseille on Sunday. The upset defeats of Australia and New Zealand leaves South Africa as the sole Tri-Nations representative left in the tournament.
South Africa completed an unbeaten run through Pool A at the Rugby World Cup on Sunday when they outplayed the feisty United States Eagles 64-15, running in nine tries to two.
When South Africa takes to the field in their final Rugby World Cup Pool A match against the United States in Montpellier on Sunday, Jake White will reach the 50-match milestone as Springbok coach, the first man to achieve the feat.
South Africa secured a Rugby World Cup quarterfinal place with a 30-25 win over Tonga in Lens on Saturday. A second-string starting 15 failed to produce the goods, prompting Springbok coach Jake White to insert his all-star substitutes' bench early in the second half.
Led by a sensational performance from scrumhalf Fourie du Preez, the Springboks laid down a Rugby World Cup marker by crushing defending champions England 36-0 in Paris on Friday.
Former South Africans, or players with South African connections, will be a significant presence at the 2007 Rugby World Cup. If you put them all together, in fact, you'd have more than enough for a "South African Export XV", substitutes included.
Os du Randt and Breyton Paulse - whose fifty-second test for South Africa against Australia on Saturday might be his last - have been honoured for their outstanding services to Springbok rugby.
South Africa's results in Rugby World Cup 2003 were predictable: wins over Georgia, Uruguay and Samoa, all teams ranked below the Springboks, and losses to England and New Zealand, the two top-ranked teams in world rugby. Perhaps that predictability is what was so disappointing about SA's worst of three World Cup campaigns.
The enduring memory of the 2002 season will be one of incredulity, confusion, anger and disbelief after the Springboks were torn apart in three successive Tests on their end of year European tour, losing by record margins to France, Scotland and England. It was a disheartening showing after performances earlier in the year had hinted at a revival of Bok fortunes.
Morne du Plessis was one of South Africa's greatest rugby players and leaders, and in both respects he followed in his father's footsteps. Du Plessis senior led the Springboks to a four-nil whitewash of the much-vaunted All Blacks in 1949, and 37 years later Du Plessis junior led the Boks to a three-one series triumph over New Zealand.