Boks beat Italy despite disappointing show

The Springboks beat Italy 22-6 in their third end-of-year tour match against Italy at the Stadio Euganeo.

South Africa's Springboks' lock Eben Etzebeth (R) fights for the ball with Italy's fly-half Kelly Haimona during the rugby union Test Match between Italy and South Africa, on November 22, 2014 at the Euganeo stadium in Padua. AFP

JOHANNESBURG - The Springboks beat Italy 22-6 in their third end-of-year tour match against Italy at the Stadio Euganeo in Padua on Saturday afternoon.

The conditions were good for running rugby, but the Boks struggled to find their rhythm early in the encounter and it was Italy who did most of the attacking in the first ten minutes.

After missing his first shot at goal, Kelly Haimona opened the scoring for the hosts with a penalty in the 12th minute.

Pat Lambie levelled matters a short while later with an easy shot at goal after Italy gave away a penalty in their 22nd minute.

The first try of the game was scored by Coenie Oosthuizen after the Boks went on the attack. The prop was tackled just short but managed to stretch out to put the Boks up 8-3.

Haimona pulled three back for Italy just before the break with his second penalty of the day.

Both sides struggled to get going after half time.

Haimona could have put Italy in the lead, but his penalty attempt fell short.

Heyneke Meyer made a number of changes and Nizaam Carr was brought on to become Bok number 865.

He made a great start to his international career as he set up Cobus Reinach for the second try of the match.

Handre Pollard who came on as a replacement added the extra two to make the score 15-6.

Bryan Habana dived over in the corner late in the match for the Boks' third try.

The Springboks will be hoping to improve on a poor performance in Italy in their final game of the year when they take on Wales at the Millennium Stadium next weekend.