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Sunday, October 24, 1999 Published at 20:36 GMT 21:36 UK

Springbok marksman kicks England out

Joost van der Westhuizen: Scored South Africa's first try

England 21-44 South Africa

Springbok fly-half Jannie de Beer kicked 34 points, including a world record five drop goals, as reigning champions South Africa destroyed England in their World Cup quarter-final in Paris.

The BBC's Ian Robertson: "De Beer's boot dominated"
Tries went to wing Pieter Rossouw and, controversially, South African captain Joost van der Westhuizen, who appeared to be in touch as he scored.

Whatever the case, it was immaterial as De Beer gave a sublime demonstration of the kicker's art, leaving the field with a 100% record. It was a particularly sweet moment for the man who was not even considered the Springboks' first choice at number 10 before this match.

Squandered possession

There were very few running opportunities taken by either side throughout the match, as tactical kicking and set-pieces dominated the game. At times it more closely resembled a chess match than a game of rugby as the two sides tried to out-think each other's defence.

But it was ultimately England who blundered at crucial moments, frequently knocking the ball on under pressure in the second half and squandering possession with basic errors.

[ image: Jannie de Beer: 100% record for the match]
Jannie de Beer: 100% record for the match
The logical conclusion would be that England were exhausted after a gruelling three matches in 10 days, although statistics show that they enjoyed the lion's share of possession and simply failed to convert it into points.

South Africa will now face Australia in the semi-finals at Twickenham next Saturday.

52m monster

The match started well for England with a penalty for a collapsed scrum on the halfway line, which Paul Grayson slotted with assurance on two minutes.

De Beer then exchanged penalties with Grayson to make it 6-3, as England made some headway in midfield through number eight Lawrence Dallaglio.

[ image: England: Plenty of possession, plenty of mistakes]
England: Plenty of possession, plenty of mistakes
But just as they began to assert some control, De Beer put the Springboks level with a sublime penalty from just inside the England half, far out on the right.

Grayson then showed anything his opposite number could do, he could do better, deftly kicking a 52m monster, followed by another huge effort from far on the left for a scoreline of 12-6 to England

Scrum-half Matt Dawson, who had a relatively quiet match, then held on in a ruck and De Beer kicked the three points.

The first try came just four minutes before the interval as the Springboks made Grayson pay for a poor clearance kick, which was gathered and taken within feet of the try-line by swift passing between centres Robbie Fleck and Pieter Muller.

Controversial try

Van der Westhuizen carried over for a finger-tip try, but video replays showed he clearly touched the left corner flag before placing the ball down, which counts as in-touch.

The linesman had already signalled the score, leaving referee Jim Fleming no choice but to award it.

[ image: Paul Grayson: Also kicked superbly]
Paul Grayson: Also kicked superbly
England came out firing for the second half, winning a penalty within a minute of the restart after a sweet switch move between Greening and flanker Richard Hill.

Grayson converted, only for de Beer to kick the first of his drop goals from directly in front of the posts two minutes later.

He immediately punished England with a second after the ball was spilled in midfield. Neither a white-shirted hand nor the post could deny him as the scores moved to 22-15 in South Africa's favour.

But Grayson struck back with another outstanding kick to bring England back to 22-18, before being denied by the crossbar with an effort from 56m.

Numerous mistakes began to sneak into England's game as they were turned over, or knocked the ball on in crucial situations, and De Beer struck a third drop goal on 52 minutes to stretch the Springbok lead to seven points - 25-18.

Jonny Wilkinson came on to replace Grayson on 55 minutes, while Austin Healey replaced Nick Beal.

Drop goal number five

But England's prodigal fly-half failed to boost the side, missing a penalty within a minute of his arrival. He made amends after some spirited drives to pull three points back on 63 minutes.

But De Beer effectively killed off England's hopes with a fourth drop goal, then a hugely audacious fifth from 40m and close to the right touchline.

Still nothing went right for the men in white as De Beer slotted two more penalties to pass Percy Montgomerie's South African record for individual points scored in a match, with a personal tally of 32.

The prodigious fly-half had not finished yet however. With three minutes of injury time played, De Beer sent a speculative 40-20 kick within metres of the England line.

Wing Roussouw gathered as the awkward bounce foxed Dallaglio and flopped over the line for the try. De Beer, of course, converted as the whistle finally blew to put England out of their misery.


England: 15 Matt Perry; 14 Nick Beal, 13 Will Greenwood, 12 Phil de Glanville, 11 Dan Luger; 10 Paul Grayson, 9 Matt Dawson; 8 Lawrence Dallaglio, 7 Neil Back, 6 Richard Hill, 5 Danny Grewcock, 4 Martin Johnson (captain), 3 Phil Vickery, 2 Phil Greening, 1 Jason Leonard.
Replacements: 16 Jonny Wilkinson, 17 Mike Catt, 18 Austin Healey, 19 Tim Rodber, 20 Martin Corry, 21 Darren Garforth, 22 Richard Cockerill.

South Africa: 15 Percy Montgomery; 14 Deon Kayser, 13 Robbie Fleck, 12 Pieter Muller, 11 Pieter Rossouw; 10 Jannie de Beer, 9 Joost van der Westhuizen (captain); 8 Bobby Skinstad, 7 Andre Venter, 6 Rassie Erasmus, 5 Mark Andrews, 4 Krynauw Otto, 3 Cobus Visagie, 2 Naka Drotske, 1 Os du Randt.
Replacements: 16 Stefan Terblanche, 17 Henry Honiball, 18 Werner Swanepoel, 19 Andre Vos, 20 Albert van den Berg, 21 Ollie Le Roux, 22 Chris Rossouw.

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