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Classic rivalry: New Zealand vs South Africa

FILE – South African rugby captain Francios Pienaar, center, raises the trophy after receiving it from South African President Nelson Mandela, left, who wears a South African rugby shirt, after they defeated New Zealand in 15-12 in a World Cup match at Ellis Park, Johannesburg, South Africa, June 24, 1995. PHOTO: AP

PARIS (AP) — A brief history of Rugby World Cup matches between New Zealand and South Africa before they meet again on Saturday in the final at Stade de France.

1995 final: South Africa 15, New Zealand 12, ET in Johannesburg

At the end of apartheid, South Africa was readmitted to rugby and given two years to organize the World Cup. It pulled off a 16-team tournament over 30 days. The Springboks and All Blacks reached the final unbeaten.

The Springboks shut down wingers Jonah Lomu and Marc Ellis, who each scored a record seven tournament tries and led 9-6 on kicks at halftime.

New Zealand’s Andrew Mehrtens kicked a second-half drop goal and they finished regulation time 9-all. In extra time, the teams added penalties in the first half and, in the second, Joel Stransky landed his title-clinching second drop goal.

President Nelson Mandela famously personified his attempts to reconcile Black and white South Africans by wearing a Springboks jersey and cap when he presented the trophy to captain Francois Pienaar.

1999 third place: South Africa 22, New Zealand 18 in Cardiff

The Springboks lost in the semi-finals in extra time to eventual champion Australia, and the All Blacks were gunned down by France at Twickenham. Breyton Paulse scored the third-place game’s only try to help the Boks lead 16-12 at halftime. Andrew Mehrtens’ sixth penalty had the All Blacks trailing by one point but Percy Montgomery’s second drop goal in the 75th minute clinched the bronze medal.

FILE – New Zealand’s All Blacks perform their haka ahead of the start of the Rugby World Cup Pool B game between New Zealand and South Africa in Yokohama, Japan, Sept 21, 2019. New Zealand beat South Africa 23-13. PHOTO: AP

2003 quarterfinal: New Zealand 29, South Africa 9 in Melbourne

The All Blacks dominated but were limited to three tries, two of them set up by flyhalf Carlos Spencer. South Africa was somehow still in touch after an hour at 16-9 behind thanks to Derick Hougaard’s boot, but Keven Mealamu then broke tired tackles to score and Joe Rokocoko finished a sweeping move to cap the scoring and consign the Springboks to their earliest World Cup exit.

2015 semi-final: New Zealand 20, South Africa 18 in London

The defending champion All Blacks overcame poor discipline to reach the final from a tight and tense contest at Twickenham. Handre Pollard kicked the Springboks to a 12-7 lead at halftime, when All Blacks try-scorer Jerome Kaino was in the sin-bin.

The All Blacks spent the last five minutes of the interval on the field running drills in the rain. After an hour, they were five ahead from a Dan Carter drop goal and Beauden Barrett try, and South Africa’s Bryan Habana was in the bin.

Pat Lambie replaced an injured Pollard and kicked a penalty to close the gap to two with 11 minutes left. A late lineout steal by Sam Whitelock denied Victor Matfield the chance to set up a last drive, and the All Blacks pinned the Boks in their half to the end.

2019 pool: New Zealand 23, South Africa 13 in Yokohama

Two tries in four minutes by George Bridge and Scott Barrett platformed the All Blacks’ 17-3 lead at halftime. The Springboks fought back with a Pieter-Steph du Toit try and Handre Pollard drop goal to trail 17-13.

But inspired by Ardie Savea and Beauden Barrett, they moved beyond reach thanks to two penalties. The Springboks eventually became the first team to lose a pool game and win the title, taking the final from England, which knocked out the All Blacks in the semi-finals.

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