Dominant Springboks make it four wins in a row

Port Elizabeth (South Africa) (AFP) –


Wingers Courtnall Skosan and Raymond Rhule scored their first Test tries as South Africa stretched a winning run to four Tests by defeating Argentina 37-15 Saturday in the Rugby Championship.

Springboks fly-half Elton Jantjies kicked 17 points at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in Port Elizabeth as the home team finished comfortable victors after leading 13-5 at half-time.

The victory followed a 3-0 whitewash of France two months ago and continued a turnaround after a calendar-year record eight defeats in 12 Tests last season.

Argentina were virtually always on the back foot, committing countless handling errors, conceding numerous penalties and fly-half Nicolas Sanchez had an off-day with his goal-kicking.

Relentless early pressure from South Africa finally paid off after 12 minutes when Jantjies slotted a penalty after flanker Tomas Lezana went off his feet at a ruck.

Jantjies doubled the lead on 20 minutes from another penalty with Lezana again the offender, this time caught offside by French referee Romain Poite.

A six-point lead after 20 minutes was hardly the reward the Springboks deserved as they had kept the Pumas hemmed deep in their half on a cool, clear eastern Cape evening.

It took Argentina 27 minutes to reach the South African '22' and almost immediately Sanchez had a chance to score, but missed a kickable penalty attempt.

However, five minutes later the South Americans did score when a grubber kick from centre Jan Serfontein was snapped up by full-back Joaquin Tuculet, who counterattacked.

Winger Emiliano Boffelli carried forward the move and his clever kick ahead was snapped up by scrum-half Martin Landajo and he dotted down in the corner.

Sanchez failed to convert, leaving South Africa with a 6-5 ahead that did not reflect their possession and territory dominance.

South Africa finally scored a try after 37 minutes as Skosan collected an inside pass from Jantjies, shrugged off a tackle and went over between the posts.

Jantjies converted and South Africa left the field at half-time full value for a 13-5 advantage.

Sanchez and Jantjies exchanged second-half penalties before Rhule burst between two Pumas to score his first try, which was converted.

Slick handling sent Boffelli over at the other end and substitute fly-half Juan Martin Hernandez converted to leave the South Americans trailing 23-15 with an hour gone.

South Africa controlled the final quarter and forwards Siya Kolisi and substitute Pieter-Steph du Toit scored tries which Jantjies converted.