Boks start World Cup title defense with win over Scotland

The Springboks have hit the 2023 Rugby World Cup ground running with a 18-3 victory over Scotland during their Pool B opening match in Marseille, France on Sunday.

It was a special moment for scrumhalf Faf de Klerk, who gained his 50th Test cap in Springboks colours.

As expected, South Africa dominated position and territory the entire first half, but for some reason, the defending champions could not find the right pass and penetrate a stubborn Scottish defense.

The Springboks went into the break with a narrow 6-3 lead, thanks to utility back Manie Libbok, who converted two of his first three kicks after missing his first attempt early into the game.

Experienced lock Eben Etzebeth had to be substituted after sustaining an injury, which saw RG Snyman take to the field.

Coach Jacques Nienaber’s men came back into the second half all fired up, as they scored two quick tries. Thanks to Pieter-Steph du Toit, who crashed over the line after good phase-play in the Scottish 22.

Few minutes later, exciting prospect Kurt-Lee Arendse raced away for his 12th try in his 11th Test after an exquisite pinpoint no-look cross-kick pass from Libbok, and extend the Springboks lead to 16-3.

De Klerk took over the kicking duties, made no mistake, and scored the conversion to take their lead up by 15 points.

Both teams continued to take the game to each other, but neither of them was able to crack each other’s defense and the Boks went on to win the encounter.

South Africa will now shift their focus on their next game, as they will take on Romania next week Sunday.

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