Gutsy 14-man Ireland beats Springboks 26-20

Gutsy 14-man Ireland beats Springboks 26-20
Updated 11 June 2016

Gutsy 14-man Ireland beats Springboks 26-20

Gutsy 14-man Ireland beats Springboks 26-20

CAPE TOWN, South Africa: Ireland won a test in South Africa for the first time on Saturday, shrugging off the loss of flanker CJ Stander to a first-half red card to outfight new coach Allister Coetzee’s Springboks 26-20 at Newlands.
South Africa-born Stander was sent off on his return to his homeland for knocking Boks flyhalf Pat Lambie unconscious with a flying charge-down attempt.
Undermanned for the last hour, and already missing a string of regulars for this tour, Ireland held out for a victory that will rate as one of its most famous and gutsiest.
Fullback Jared Payne crossed early and scrumhalf Conor Murray ran in for a second try at the start of the second half. Ireland even held out South Africa with 13 men for the last 10 minutes of the first half after center Robbie Henshaw’s yellow card.
With South Africa desperate, replacement Pieter-Steph du Toit’s interception try out of the blue closed the gap to three points at 23-20 with 12 minutes to go.
Under immense late pressure, Ireland still didn’t cave.
Flyhalf Paddy Jackson, starting in place of regular playmaker Jonathan Sexton, replied with a late penalty to cap his excellent 16-point display.
That gave the Irish a little breathing space but the visiting team’s huge spirit was embodied in a last-ditch try-saving tackle in the corner after the final hooter on Springboks wing JP Pietersen. If Pietersen had squeezed his way over, South Africa would have had a kick to steal the game.
Ireland didn’t deserve to lose after being the better team for the opening stages and leading 10-3 after Payne, playing out of position at fullback, chased down a chip through to score.
Midway through the first half, Stander leaped high in the air in an attempt to charge a kick from Lambie, and connected heavily with the Boks No. 10’s head with his hip. He was shown a straight red card.
From there, Ireland conceded a try to wing Lwazi Mvovo soon after.
Yet despite their numerical advantage for most of the game, the Springboks, playing under Coetzee for the first time, couldn’t break the Irish defense or spirit.