Rugby News: South Africa defeats New Zealand to secure unprecedented fourth Rugby World Cup title


South Africa produced an outstanding defensive performance to narrowly defeat New Zealand 12-11 in a thrilling Rugby World Cup final, securing their record-breaking fourth Webb Ellis Cup. The match, played in front of 80,065 spectators at the Stade de France, saw an unprecedented four yellow cards issued due to the heightened focus on foul play. All Blacks captain Sam Cane was the first player to be sent off in a World Cup final after his yellow card for a high tackle was upgraded to a red following a bunker review just before half-time. Despite playing with only 14 men for three-quarters of the match, New Zealand stayed true to their attacking game plan and scored the only try of the game through Beauden Barrett, bringing them within a point of the lead. However, the Springboks, led by the outstanding Pieter-Steph du Toit, held firm under immense pressure in the final quarter, and Handre Pollard’s four penalties in the first half proved enough to secure victory and add to their previous World Cup titles in 1995, 2007, and 2019. This triumph meant that the Webb Ellis Cup stayed in the southern hemisphere for the fifth consecutive tournament, and South Africa’s Siya Kolisi became only the second captain, after All Black Richie McCaw, to lift the trophy twice. Kolisi acknowledged the challenge posed by the All Blacks and expressed gratitude to his team for their fighting spirit, emphasizing the importance of their success in a country facing many difficulties.


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