Australia take narrow 10-5 lead vs Boks at HT

The Springboks started very positively, stringing almost 20 phases together in the opening four minutes.

FILE; The Boks however got nothing for their early dominance in possession. Picture: Supplied.

CAPE TOWN - Australia take a narrow 10-5 lead into halftime against the Springboks at Newlands.

The Springboks started very positively, stringing almost 20 phases together in the opening four minutes.

The Boks however got nothing for their early dominance in possession.

The Wallabies had the first opportunity to take the lead in the 9th minute, but flyhalf Bernard Foley put a penalty attempt at goal wide.

The homeside did get on the scoresheet first, when Marcel Coetzee crashed over in front of the Jan Pickard stand to give the Boks a 5-0 lead in the 12th minute.

Handre Pollard missed the conversion.

Over the next 10 minutes, the Springboks continued to dominate the possession and territory stats, with the Aussies only managing to launch a few attacks in the opening 20 minutes.

Australia eventually got their first points on the board courtesy of a Foley penalty goal, after Bok hooker Adriaan Strauss was adjudged to have tackled a player without the ball.

Almost immediately after the restart, Wallaby winger Adam Ashley-Cooper scored after racing down the touchline in front of the Grandstand to score in the corner despite efforts to tackle him.

Foley slotted the conversion, and the Wallabies led 10-5 with just over 10 minutes to play.

By this point, Australia looked settled and more patient on attack than South Africa, with several passes failing to go to hand and Handre Pollard also failing to find touch from a penalty.

Captain Jean de Villiers also turned down a shot a goal with about 5 minutes left in the half and instead go for a lineout and set up a maul 5 metres from the Wallaby goal line.

That decision bombed, and the Boks left empty handed.

Coetzee's try is the only moment the Boks really have to be happy about in the first 40 minutes.

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