Rugby World Cup 2019
South Africa 57-3 Namibia
The Springboks took just 27 minutes to claim the four-try bonus point in their 57-3 victory over Namibia at the City of Toyota Stadium on Saturday.
South Africa ensured that there would be no repeat of the upset earlier in the day by Japan, who beat Ireland, as they ran in nine tries in a slick display.
The Boks dotted down on four occasions in an industrious opening half-hour, two of them scored by hooker Bongi Mbonambi.
Coach Rassie Erasmus would have warned his players about maintaining their discipline and attacking shape against their southern African neighbours, and they did just that with three almost identical tries from lineout drives.
Mbonambi got things going as he held the ball well at the back of the maul from a catch by Player of the Match Lood de Jager in the 10th minute, and flanker Francois Louw peeled off from another drive five minutes later.
Things got worse for Namibia when number eight Adriaan Booysen was shown a yellow card by referee Mathieu Raynal in the 17th minute for a deliberate knock-down, and from the resultant penalty kick into touch, Mbonambi got his second five-pointer of the night from a lineout drive.
The South Africans were dominant in the scrum throughout, with tight-head Vincent Koch drilling Namibia loose-head Desiderius Sethie, which earned the Boks a number of penalties.
The South Africa backline got virtually unlimited front-foot ball, and that helped centres Frans Steyn and Lukhanyo Am, as well as full-back Warrick Gelant, get easily over the advantage line.
Namibia appeared more resilient after the opening quarter, with fly-half Cliven Loubser slotting a 24th-minute penalty.
But conceding those three points jolted the Boks back into life, and they produced the best try of the match. Steyn and Koch punched holes in the Namibia defence, before scrum-half Herschel Jantjies flung a beautiful long pass out wide to put Gelant into space.
The South Africa No.15 drew the last defender to put left-wing Makazole Mapimpi over, and the bonus point was secured.
The Boks were not quite done yet in the first half, as Gelant again sprinkled some of his magic dust, with Am eventually scoring off a Schalk Brits pass on the stroke of half-time to make it 31-3.
Namibia managed to keep the South Africans at bay at the start of the second half, but the Boks came roaring back with three tries in 11 minutes to become the first team to register 50 points at Rugby World Cup 2019.
Gelant again showed what a threat he can be on attack with a stunning pass to Am, who popped it back to the No.15 to score, before Mapimpi got his second try, after a clever lineout move involving a break by Brits.
It was perhaps fitting that squad captain Siya Kolisi, who replaced Kwagga Smith, was the man to dive over to bring up the half-century in the 59th minute, pictured above.
A further try by captain-on-the-night Brits rounded off a satisfying night for the two-time Rugby World Cup champions.