Rugby Championship

Boks can usurp ABs at top

2013-09-13 07:40
Jean de Villiers (Gallo Images)
Cape Town - There is extra incentive for the Springboks if they manage to beat the All Blacks in their Rugby Championship Test at Eden Park in Auckland on Saturday (kick-off 09:35 SA time).

The Boks haven't won at the iconic ground since 1937, while the All Blacks are also unbeaten there in 30 Tests there dating back to 1994.

However, the Boks are on the rampage following their 38-12 walloping of the Wallabies in Brisbane last week - a result which saw them beat Australia in that city for the first time since 1971.

And if Jean de Villiers's men can build on last week's efforts, they can usurp the All Blacks at the top of the world rankings.

According to the official IRB website, South Africa will leapfrog New Zealand at the top of the IRB rankings if they win on Saturday.

The All Blacks, who have held the No 1 spot since November 16, 2009, are 2.7 rating points ahead of the second-placed Springboks.

A narrow victory for the Boks will give them at least a 0.44 point advantage, while a win by more than 15 points would see them ahead by just over two rating points.

On the other end of the scale, South Africa would slip back to nearly four rating points behind New Zealand if the All Blacks were to win by more than 15 points.

IRB rankings (top 10):


1. New Zealand 91.64
2. South Africa 88.94
3. England 85.76
4. Australia 83.67
5. France 81.59
6. Wales 81.36
7. Samoa 80.42
8. Ireland 79.58
9. Scotland 76.95
10. Argentina 76.41

Teams:

New Zealand:

15 Israel Dagg, 14 Ben Smith, 13 Conrad Smith, 12 Ma'a Nonu, 11 Julian Savea, 10 Daniel Carter, 9 Aaron Smith, 8 Kieran Read (captain), 7 Sam Cane, 6 Liam Messam, 5 Sam Whitelock, 4 Brodie Retallick, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Dane Coles, 1 Tony Woodcock

Substitutes: 16 Keven Mealamu, 17 Wyatt Crockett, 18 Charlie Faumuina, 19 Steven Luatua, 20 Matt Todd, 21 Tawera Kerr-Barlow, 22 Beauden Barrett, 23 Charles Piutau

South Africa:

15 Zane Kirchner, 14 Willie le Roux, 13 JJ Engelbrecht, 12 Jean de Villiers (captain), 11 Bryan Habana, 10 Morné Steyn, 9 Ruan Pienaar, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Willem Alberts, 6 Francois Louw, 5 Flip van der Merwe, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Bismarck du Plessis, 1 Tendai Mtawarira.

Substitutes: 16 Adriaan Strauss , 17 Gurthrö Steenkamp, 18 Coenie Oosthuizen, 19 Juandré Kruger, 20 Siya Kolisi, 21 Jano Vermaak, 22 Pat Lambie, 23 Jan Serfontein

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