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The Breakdown: A statistical look at round six of the Rugby Championship

By Ben Spratt
Cheslin Kolbe remains doubtful for Saturday

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New Zealand clinched the Rugby Championship last weekend but they must now face South Africa, the only side to have beaten the All Blacks so far.


A second defeat for Steve Hansen’s men would be unprecedented, although the Springboks boast a strong record in Pretoria going into Saturday’s clash.

In the other fixture on the final weekend of this year’s tournament, Argentina and Australia battle it out to avoid taking the wooden spoon, with the Wallabies potentially making unwanted history.

Australia at least enjoy a strong record when visiting the Pumas.

South Africa v New Zealand

South Africa have the opportunity to record back-to-back wins over New Zealand for the first time since 2009, following on from their 36-34 triumph in Wellington.

But the All Blacks have won on their last three trips to South Africa, while the world champions have not lost two matches in the same Rugby Championship campaign since Argentina joined the competition in 2012.


The Springboks have won 77 per cent of their Test matches at Loftus Versfeld Stadium, but even that impressive record includes just one victory against New Zealand.

Rieko Ioane is the danger man, having scored 20 tries in 19 appearances for the All Blacks. Four of those have come in three games against South Africa.

The hosts retain a threat from lineouts, however, where Eben Etzebeth (26) has won more than any other player in the tournament.


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Argentina v Australia

Argentina have the opportunity to win consecutive games against Australia for the first time ever after their shock 23-19 success away from home last month.

And should the Wallabies – winless in four away games – fail to respond with a victory of their own, they will finish bottom of the Rugby Championship for the first time in its current format.

However, Australia have won on five of their last six trips to face the Pumas and will have the opportunity to improve that record at Ernesto Maltearena Stadium, where the Wallabies have never previously played.

Argentina have won three and lost three of their six matches at the stadium.

The Pumas’ Nicolas Sanchez will hope to round off a fine campaign as the tournament’s top scorer, currently leading the way on 61 points, including four tries.

Watch: Wallaby coach Michael Cheika and flyhalf Bernard Foley ahead of facing Argentina

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