September 11 down the years
Springboks stutter past Wales
September 11, 1900
Argentina winger Lucas Borges scores a try despite the best efforts of Georgia's Mamuka Gorgodze, Argentina  v Georgia, World Cup, Stade Gerland, Lyon, France, September 11, 2007
Lucas Borges touches down for Argentina in their World Cup win over Georgia in Lyon © Getty Images

The Springboks kicked off the defence of their Rugby World Cup crown with a fortuitous 17-16 victory over Wales in Wellington. Francois Hougaard got the South Africans out of jail with his second-half try but Wales squandered two late chances to claim a famous victory, with Rhys Priestland missing a straightforward drop-goal attempt and James Hook dragging a late penalty attempt wide of the uprights. Worse still for the Welsh, TV footage emerged after the game that a 'missed' first-half penalty attempt by Hook may have actually gone over.

Argentina followed up their shock opening-day victory over Rugby World Cup hosts France with a 33-3 victory over Georgia in Lyon.

Despite the lopsided nature of the final scoreline, the Pumas had been far from convincing. hey had only led by just three points at the interval (6-3) and it took a quick-fire brace from ring wing Lucas Borges to give them some much-needed breathing space.

The bonus point they had been so desperate to attain was only secured in the closing stages, after late tries from Patricio Albacete and Federico Aramburu. The Argentines, though, went on to top the pool and eventually reached the semi-finals before eventually bowing out at the hands of eventual champions South Africa.

Two years after making his debut against the Springboks, Keith Murdoch is handed his second start in an All Blacks shirt, the then 29-year-old prop getting the nod at tight-head for the third and final Test against the Wallabies.

Murdoch played his part in a resounding 38-3 win for the New Zealanders, earning himself a place in the squad for the end-of-season tour of Britain, Ireland and France in the process.

New Zealand's Allan Hewson racked up a then individual record of 26 points in his side's 38-13 victory over Australia. The Kiwi fullback scored a try, a drop goal, two conversions and five penalties during an awesome display.

Mike Catt helped himself to two tries as Bath kicked off their season with an 18-10 win at Bristol. The West Country side went on to record a Cup and Courage League double.

The NZRFU unveiled a panel of the 22 players to be withdrawn from the first half of the 2007 Super 14 campaign in order to prepare for the Rugby World Cup in France later that year.


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