Player ratings: Le carton rouge
OPINION: France stretched their winning streak to 12 consecutive matches when they edged South Africa 30-26 in a game where both teams lost players with red cards.
It was a nervous start for the Springboks, which was heightened by the red card of flank Pieter-Steph du Toit in the 12th minute.
As a result, the Boks went down by 13 points at end of the first quarter.
However, once the nerves settled they work themselves back using some clever tactics, mixed with a good dosage of brawn – speeding up the match at every opportune time.
In the end, the visitors just fell short – French fullback Thomas Ramos sealing the win with 20 points – a conversion and six penalties.
Jan de Koning rates the South African players!
15 Willie le Roux
Hands let him down in an early attack and he shot out of line on defence which resulted in a gap and eventually lead to the first French try. However, he came in as the first receiver often and delivered a sublime skip-pass that gifted Arendse his try.
14 Cheslin Kolbe
Nervous start, with a couple of early errors. He took charge of the goal-kicking and settled down with some impressive runs – even bouncing off giant French flank Anthony Jelonch.
13 Jesse Kriel
Another player with some early handling jitters and also missed a couple of tackles, but eventually settled down.
12 Damian de Allende
Made some impressive metres with the ball in hand and was very brutal and effective on defence.
11 Kurt-Lee Arendse
Was very impressive with the ball in hand, constantly asking questions – getting 80-odd metres from his eight carries. Put some big forwards on the ground with impressive ankle tackles.
10 Damian Willemse
Played wider out on attack, but closer in on defence and didn’t shirk his duties. He even had a ‘line-out won’ behind his name. However, his out-of-hand kicking still requires a lot of work.
9 Francois de Klerk
Conceded an early off-side penalty and also missed a couple of tackles. However, brought some energy with quick plays and also took over some of the touch-kicks.
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8 Albertus Smith
Very busy and made some valuable metres with the ball in hands, even beating a couple of defenders. However, but hands let him down at times. Made all his tackles.
7 Pieter-Steph du Toit
Received a red card in the 12th minute for a dangerous clean-out. Contribution negligible.
6 Siyamthanda Kolisi (captain)
Some impressive work, made seven tackles, went into some dark places for his team and scored their first try with a bit of deceptive play.
5 Franco Mostert
His hands also let him down early in the match, lost a number of his own line-outs and conceded a couple of penalties. Kept working hard – one of just three players with a tackle count of double digits.
4 Eben Etzebeth
Some powerful runs and made good metres. He put in another big, physical shift.
3 Frans Malherbe
Solid in the scrums and some impressive work on defence.
2 Mbongeni Mbonambi
Impressive workrate in his short stint, especially at the breakdowns and one powerful carry. Missed one tackle.
1 Retshegofaditswe Nche
A couple of impressive carries, made all his tackles and was solid in the set pieces.
16 Malcolm Marx (on for Mbonambi – 29th min [HIA call] – back on in 50th min)
A quiet day at the office by his standard. No major errors, but did not have a massive impact.
17 Steven Kitshoff (on for Nche – 50th min)
Had a few carries and made all but one of his carries. Solid in the set pieces.
18 Vincent Koch (on for Malherbe – 50th min)
Had a few decent carries, made all his tackles and was solid in the set pieces.
19 Marvin Orie (on for Kolisi – 70th min)
Not enough time to be rated.
20 Deon Fourie (on for Smith – 60th min)
Made just one tackle and one carry in his 10-minute cameo – then put his team under pressure with a yellow card that left the Boks a man down for the final 10 minutes.
21 Cobus Reinach (on for De Klerk – 60th min)
He seemed rusty and looked a touch off the pace, but made a handful of tackles – without missing any.
22 Manie Libbok (on for Kriel – 76th min)
Not enough time to be rated.
23 Makazole Mapimpi (on for Kolbe – 48th min)
The game did not flow his way and he conceded two turnovers.