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Thu Apr 24 16:21:20 SAST 2014

Baby Boks march into the semifinals

Craig Ray | 13 June, 2012 06:150 Comments
SA U/20 centre William Small-Smith during the IRB U/20 Junior Championship match between South Africa and England from Cape Town Stadium on June 12, 2012 in Cape Town
Image by: Carl Fourie / Gallo Images

A ROUSING second-half display by the Baby Boks secured their place in the semifinals of the Junior World Championships after it looked like their tournament was over at halftime.

They scored four tries in the second half to stun England and eliminate Ireland as Pool B winners. They will now play Argentina in the semifinals.

Winning the game - and scoring four tries - was always going to be a tough assignment for South Africa, and it looked virtually impossible after 40 sterile minutes against a superb defence that left the hosts scoreless at halftime.

But they emerged from the tunnel for the second half brimming with energy and by the hour mark they were only a try short of the priceless bonus point.

Captain William Small-Smith opened the Boks' account with a scything angled run on to a Jan Serfontein pass to score under the poles.

Six minutes later flank Shaun Adendorff piled over the line for try number two.

England were wilting under the intense physicality of the Boks' onslaught and when flank Pieter-Steph du Toit handed off a defender to score the third try, the momentum was with the Boks.

Adendorff sealed victory and a place in the semifinals with his second try when he burst through a hole in the defence.

The second-half display was immense and, with Du Toit, Adendorff and prop Steven Kitshoff in the vanguard, the Baby Boks were well set to achieve their goal of winning the title for the first time.

Coach Dawie Theron will have some tough decisions to make on the make-up of his team as Du Toit only played flank because of an injury to regular captain Wian Liebenberg. His performance was so complete that the captain might battle to win his place back.

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Baby Boks march into the semifinals

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