RUGBY: Australian coach Ewen McKenzie said last week that no one backed his struggling side to end a 21-year winless drought against the Springboks in Cape Town yesterday and he was right on the money.
The Wallabies slumped to their fourth loss in five games under McKenzie after they were overpowered 28-8 in a one-sided Rugby Championship clash.
McKenzie, who took over following Robbie Deans' axing after the British and Irish Lions series defeat in July, has only tasted success once, a 14-13 win over Argentina in Perth a fortnight ago.
The Springboks provided no more joy for McKenzie as they completed the double over the struggling Aussies following their crushing 38-12 victory in Brisbane earlier this month.
Australia scored the first points through Christian Leali'ifano's penalty in the seventh minute but after that it was all Springboks.
By the 19th minute they were leading 20-3 and the game was gone.
Debutant Chris Feauai-Sautia scored a consolation try for the Wallabies two minutes from the end but it was far too little, and far too late.
McKenzie said the Wallabies had paid the price for a slow start.
"We didn't do well enough early in the game and they got away," he said.
"We had opportunities to put pressure on them but lost out through poor execution. That's where we are at the moment, all we can do is keep plugging away."
There will be no respite for the battered Wallabies as they head to Argentina to face the Pumas in their final game this weekend.
The Pumas pushed the table-topping All Blacks all the way before losing 33-15 in La Plata yesterday.
Meanwhile, the Springboks could be without lock Flip van der Merwe for the title-winning decider against New Zealand in Johannesburg this weekend after he was cited for foul play against the Wallabies.
Van der Merwe faces a Sanzar judicial hearing after he was alleged to have punched or struck winger Joe Tomane.
The Springboks need to win with a bonus point, while depriving the All Blacks of a bonus point, to lift the title.
South Africa 28
(A Strauss, Z Kirchner, W le Roux tries; M Steyn (2) conv; Steyn (3) penalties)
(C Feauai-Sautia try; C Leali'ifano pen)
New Zealand 33
(J Savea, S Kane, B Smith (2) tries; A Cruden, B Barrett con; Cruden (3) pen)
(N Sanchez (4), M Bosch pen)
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