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Friday, November 5, 1999 Published at 08:23 GMT


More agony for All Blacks

Springbok skipper Joost Van de Westhuizen breaks through the Kiwi defence

South Africa 22-18 New Zealand

Rugby giants New Zealand will have to qualify for the next World Cup, after slumping to another defeat, this time to South Africa in the third-place play-off in Cardiff.


David Parry-Jones reports from the Millennium Stadium
The All Blacks, hot favourites for the tournament, crashed again, four days after the semi-final defeat by France that has already passed into sporting legend.

The play-off may be a fixture that traditionally fails to raise the interest of fans and players alike, but the reaction of the South Africans at the final whistle showed that this had been no hollow victory.

The Springboks, who had only lost their own semi-final to Australia in extra-time, were desperate to end the tournament with their heads held high.

Paulse rate spot on

And Joost Van de Westhuizen's proud team did just that at the Millennium Stadium.

South African wing Breyton Paulse scored the only try of the game, a solo effort after 27 minutes.


[ image: Tana Umaga desperately tries to spark an All Black attack]
Tana Umaga desperately tries to spark an All Black attack
Paulse, clearly inspired by France's successful tactic of kicks over the static Kiwi defence, chipped the ball through then, with Christian Cullen back-pedalling desperately, he hacked on again before touching down.

The All Blacks were a shadow of the team that had cantered through the group stages of the tournament in such impressive fashion.

Forwards and backs alike looked strangely unsure of themselves and with little in the way of attacking options, they had to rely on the boot of Andrew Mehrtens.

The fly-half kicked six penalties for all 18 of his team's points.

Dropped out

In the end though, the difference between the two teams turned out to be two drop goals from Percy Montgomery.

Drop goals have been the emblem of this World Cup and the world record five that Jannie de Beer landed against England took South Africa into the last four.

In the absence of de Beer - who stepped aside to allow veteran outside half Henry Honiball to play his last ever international - full-back Montgomery assumed the drop goal duties.

After Mehrtens had kicked the All Blacks to within one point at 19-18, Montgomery secured victory with his second drop goal with five minutes on the clock.

Teams:

South Africa: Montgomery, Paulse, Fleck, Muller, Terblanche, Honiball, van der Westhuizen, Vos, Venter, Erasmus, Andrews, Otto, Visagie, Drotske, du Randt.

Replacements: Julies, de Beer, Swanepoel, Kruger, van den Bergh, Rossouw, le Roux.

New Zealand: Wilson, Umaga, Cullen, Ieremia, Lomu, Mehrtens, Marshall, Randell, Kronfeld, Thorne, Willis, Maxwell, Meeuws, Hammett, Dowd.

Replacements: Alantini, Brown, Duggan, Mika, Jones, Hoeft, Oliver.

Referee: Peter Marshall (Australia)



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