posted on Jun, 12 2004 @ 11:19 AM
South Africa beat Ireland 31-17 in their first Test in Bloemfontein on Saturday.
Ireland's quest for a first Test win in South Africa collapsed after a series of second-half mistakes handed their hosts victory.
Conditions were perfect with a cloudless sky on a cool winter's day and the only late change to the teams was a positional one, with South Africa's
Jacques Cronje moving to number eight and Pedrie Wannenburg swopping to go into the flank position.
In the third minute, when it looked as if Ireland had turned the ball over, Os du Randt emerged with the ball and found flanker Schalk Burger in
support. He whisked the ball down the line to lock Bakkies Botha, who lumbered through a big gap, rolled out of Irish scrum-half Peter Stringer's
tackle and forced his way over the line to score the opening try.
Even though it was not long before Ronan O'Gara slotted a penalty to get Ireland on the board, there were ominous signs as the Boks took one rumbling
maul some 40 metres upfield before they were stopped.