Le Cap (AFP)
History repeated itself when Morne Steyn took a late-game penalty to give South Africa a 19-16 win over the British and Irish Lions in Cape Town on Saturday and a 2-1 series triumph .
In 2009, Steyn received a late penalty from his own half to give the Springboks an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series they also won 2-1.
Now 37, Steyn replaced opener Handre Pollard with 15 minutes remaining and almost immediately scored a penalty to give South Africa a 16-13 advantage.
Rival opener Finn Russell, an early replacement for injured Dan Biggar, equalized with his third penalty of the game five minutes to go.
Then, one minute from the end of a tense fight, the Springboks received another penalty and Steyn calmly scored to give the hosts the advantage.
The drama was not over, however, as the Lions won a scrum inside South Africa, offering them a chance for a spectacular victory.
However, this was not the case as the tourists were penalized with the set piece, Steyn kicked the ball into touch and French referee Mathieu Raynal signaled the end of the match.
It was a historic series victory as no team has succeeded in the 130-year rivalry between South Africa and the Lions after losing the first test.
The Springboks lost 22-17 in Game 1 this time around and fought back with a 27-9 triumph last weekend to tie a streak played behind closed doors due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Winger Cheslin Kolbe scored the only South African try, which Pollard converted to give the home side the lead 13-10 after trailing seven points at halftime.
The rest of Springbok’s points came from four penalties with Pollard, who finished the game with 502 test points, and Steyn scoring two apiece.
Hooker Ken Owens claimed a try for the Lions and Russell, sidelined by an ankle injury since July 7, contributed 11 points from a conversion and three penalties.
© 2021 AFP