Argentina 20-36 South Africa: Springboks seal late bonus point to move level with New Zealand

By Sports Desk September 17, 2022

South Africa moved level on points with New Zealand at the top of the Rugby Championship standings with a 36-20 bonus-point win over Argentina on Saturday.

An ill-disciplined Argentina recovered from 16 points down at half-time to move within two of their opponents and set up a tense conclusion at Estadio Libertadores de America.

But Damian de Allende and Malcolm Marx crossed over late on to add to South Africa's three first-half tries as they made it 29 wins in their 33 Tests with Argentina.

The Springboks welcome Argentina to Durban next weekend, while New Zealand – who boast a better points difference – host Australia with their fate in their own hands.

South Africa fell behind early on to a Emiliano Boffelli penalty, but they hit back through Damian Willemse's successful kick and the opening try followed 10 minutes later.

An offside Santiago Carreras attempted to stop Jaden Hendrikse from grounding the ball and a penalty try was awarded, with the fly-half also being issued a yellow card.

Boffelli moved Argentina back within four points from the boot, but the ball was popped up to Hendrikse and he burst through under the sticks to give the Boks breathing space.

After Willemse added the extras, the visitors pushed on and had a third try through Marx, who crashed over following a sustained spell of pressure.

Argentina's hopes of recovering were further dented when referee James Doleman sin-binned Gonzalo Bertranou after losing patience for a series of infringements.

South Africa could not entirely put the game out of reach and were themselves down to 14 after Willie Le Roux, having already been warned, strayed offside.

Tomas Cubelli appeared to spill the ball when charging through and attempting to touch down, but it was deemed Kwagga Smith illegally intervened and a penalty try was given.

Smith was also yellow carded for that offence, yet it was the Boks who finished strongest as De Allende and Marx added two more tries to seal what seemed an unlikely bonus point.

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