South Africa defeat England 32-12 to become the 2019 Rugby World Cup champions
South Africa has won the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan, defeating England 32-12 in an epic final.
Springbok fans are celebrating in Japan, as they have been crowned the champions of the ninth Rugby World Cup, in an amazing contest at the International Stadium Yokohama, in Kanagawa, Japan.
Despite being 20 minutes late to the stadium, Siya Kolisi's team did not lose focus from the opening whistle, and after an hour of Pollard trading penalties with England, two tries and conversions secured their victory and their third world cup championship.
The game got off to a scary start, with England player Kyle Sinckler colliding with South Africa's wing Makazole Mapimpi barely three minutes into the final. Sinckler was out on the pitch for several minutes, but fortunately managed to leave on his own feet. He was permanently replaced by Dan Cole after showing signs of a concussion.
Just a few minutes later, South Africa was the first to score points with a successful penalty taken by Handre Pollard at the nine-minute mark.
England was then awarded at the 20-minute mark after a forward pass by South Africa. However, injury issues then plagued South Africa, as Lood de Jager went off with a shoulder injury and Bongani Mbonambi is off with an HIA. Owen Farrell was eventually able to tie the score at 3-3 with a successful penalty.
But less than five minutes later, South Africa took the lead once again, as Pollard successfully capitalized on yet another penalty.
Both teams continued trading penalties for the first half, as England's Farrell once again tied the score to 6-6 at 35 minutes. But at the end of the second half, Pollard managed to claw back two more penalties for South Africa, bringing the score to 12-6 to SA at half time.
Early into the second half, the Springboks had a change of props, as Tendai Mtawarira and Frans Malherbe were subbed for Steven Kitshoff and Vincent Koch. Then South Africa's lead only continued, as Pollard secured his fourth penalty at the 45-minute mark.
Five minutes later, Pollard once again answered back with yet another penalty - bringing the score to 15-9.
The next ten minutes saw England miss a penalty, South Africa score a penalty, and moments later, England scoring yet another penalty - bringing the score to 18-12 at the 60-minute mark.
Then, at 65 minutes in, Mapimpi secures a try for South Africa. This was the first time South Africa had scored a try in their three world cup final victories. Pollard then hit the conversion to score a dominant 25-12 lead over England.
South Africa then cemented their victory with another try by Kolbe and conversion by Pollard.
Before the game was even finished, the engraver had already started carving '2019 South Africa' onto the Webb Ellis Cup.
The tournament has been a thrilling contest since it kicked off in Japan on September 20. Congratulations to South Africa!