Stats reveal 10 man plan

Not that we needed further proof, but an in depth look at the match stats confirm that the Bok game plan is all about those with numbers 1 to 10 on their back. Will it be enough next weekend?

Tank Lanning

It was pretty tight on the scoreboard as the Boks beat Wales 23-19 to book themselves a semi-final against the old foe at Twickenham on Saturday.

Less tight were the match stats, where South Africa dominated all the attacking stats. The Welsh basically kept themselves in the game with some heroic defence, making 197 tackles to the 123 required from the Boks.

Again, most of the action took place either up front with the big boys taking one off passes with a view to getting over the gainline, or via the halfbacks Fourie du Preez and Handre Pollard. There were no offloads from any of the other backs, and very few passes.

This in stark contrast to the team the Boks will be playing against next weekend. Sure it was a much more open match that they completely dominated, but against France, Dan Carter made 28 passes, and both Ma’a Nonu and Conrad Smith made 9 passes each. They are clearly a side willing to add a bit of width to their attack, making them a lot tougher to defend against.

Speaking of variation, Nonu also made 6 kicks from hand, whereas De Allende only made 1. Not only does to keep the opposition guessing, but also has the effect of pulling the opposition defence up a little, offering the kicker more space into which he can place the ball.

Schalk Burger was named man of the match, and a cursory glance at his key match statistics seem to back that up: 59 metres run, 26 carries, 1 defenders beaten, 14 passes, 2 offloads, 16 tackles, 1 missed tackle.

He was impressively busy, but he does perform a lot of that action in the flyhalf channel. Something that perhaps adds to the Bok predictability. It would be interesting to see the Boks utilise the skills of the man with a ten on his back in that channel.

A look at all the match stats from the Vodacom Rugby App:

Points: SA 23-19 WALES

Tries: SA 1-1 WALES

Penalty tries: SA 0-0 WALES

Penalty goals: SA 5-3 WALES

Conversions: SA 0-1 WALES

Drop goals: SA 1-1 WALES

Missed penalty goals: SA 2-1 WALES

Missed conversions: SA 1-0 WALES

Possession: SA 59%-41% WALES

Territory: SA 61%-39% WALES


Carries: SA 157-106 WALES

Clean breaks: SA 7-3 WALES

Defenders beaten: SA 20-13 WALES

Handling errors: SA 8-8 WALES

Kicks from hand: SA 46-44 WALES

Kicks caught: SA 46-42 WALES

Knock ons: SA 7-6 WALES

Lineouts won on own ball: SA 15-9 WALES

Lineouts stolen: SA 0-0 WALES

Loose ball collected: SA 12-10 WALES

Metres run: SA 543-294 WALES

Offloads: SA 7-3 WALES

Passes: SA 167-152 WALES

Penalties conceded: SA 10-12 WALES

Red cards: SA 0-0 WALES

Scrums won: SA 4-3 WALES

Scrums lost: SA 0-0 WALES

Tackles made: SA 123-197 WALES

Tackles missed: SA 13-20 WALES

Try assists: SA 1-1 WALES

Turnovers won: SA 9-10 WALES

Yellow cards: SA 0-0 WALES


Key individual stats:

Willie le Roux: 13 kicks from hand, 87 metres run, 2 clean breaks, 8 carries, 4 defenders beaten, 2 knock ons

Bryan Habana: 14 metres run, 4 carries, 8 tackles, 2 turnovers

JP Pietersen: 39 metres run, 6 carries, 6 tackles,

Jesse Kriel: 1 kick from hand, 38 metres run, 4 carries, 1 pass, 4 tackles

Damien de Allende: 1 kick from hand, 59 metres run, 14 carries, 3 defenders beaten, 1 pass, 7 tackles, 2 turnovers

Handre Pollard: 5 penalty goals, 2 missed penalties, 1 missed conversion, 1 drop goal, 11 kicks from hand, 35 metres run, 12 carries, 2 defenders beaten, 16 passes, 3 tackles

Fourie du Preez: 16 kicks from hand, 40 metres run, 8 carries, 103 passes

Duane Vermeulen: 90 metres run, 15 carries, 2 defenders beaten, 12 tackles, 2 missed tackles, 2 turnovers, 1 lineout won

Schalk Burger: 59 metres run, 26 carries, 1 defenders beaten, 14 passes, 2 offloads, 16 tackles, 1 missed tackle

Francois Louw: 30 metres run, 2 defenders beaten, 2 offloads, 7 tackles

Eben Etzebeth: 13 carries, 2 lineouts won,

Lood de Jager: 11 carries, 10 tackles, 2 knock ons, 6 lineouts won, 1 lineout stolen

Frans Malherbe: 1 clean break, 7 tackles, 1 missed tackle     

Bismarck du Plessis: 7 carries, 2 offloads, 1 missed tackle   

Beast Mtawarira: 3 penalties conceded, 6 tackles, 2 missed tackles

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All stats courtesy of the Vodacom Rugby App, which is available for download in all app stores. Download it now and feel like a coach during the match, and a know-it-all at the post match braai.