Explosive head-to-head battles are set to rock the Yokohama International Stadium when the Springboks and All Blacks collide in a colossal Rugby World Cup Pool B clash on Saturday, writes Quintin van Jaarsveld.
The game’s greatest rivalry brings out the absolute best in both nations. The very legacies of Springbok and All Blacks rugby are intertwined, forged in a fiery first-ever encounter on August 13, 1921, in Dunedin, where New Zealand emerged 13-5 winners.
Their epic showdown in the 1995 Rugby World Cup final at Ellis Park will forever be one of the greatest and most significant events in all of sports – the passion, emotion, intensity, skill and nerve of both teams, and the Springboks’ transcended 15-12 triumph that united a nation.
No added motivation is ever needed by players in these respective camps, however, with Saturday’s virtual pool decider set to put the winners and losers on two distinctly different paths to what they hope will lead to ultimate glory, the intensity levels will be through the roof. Iron sharpens iron and sparks are set to fly.
Click here for the key head-to-head battles – all of whom are between two of the best in world rugby in their respective positions – that’ll have a major bearing on the outcome of this much-anticipated and all-important showdown.