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Sunday Mar 29, 2020

ARCHIVE: South Africa vs Lions 2nd test 2009

It’s been more than 10 years since South Africa beat the British & Irish Lions 2-1 in a series which produced one of the greatest test matches in history.

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The second test in Pretoria on 27 June 2009 will be largely remembered for Ronan O’Gara’s penalty in the last play of the game which handed the series to South Africa.

But from a neutral’s perspective it was one of the most exhilarating games of rugby ever televised. The South African’s went into the game 1-0 up meaning a win would secure a series win in front of a packed Loftus Versfeld.

The game begun with Schalk Burger receiving a yellow card for eye gouging Luke Fitzgerald in the opening minute of his 50th test match and from that moment the game was feisty.

Springbok wingers JP Pieterson and Bryan Habana scored two incredible tries in response to an early score from Ireland full back Rob Kearney.

Brian O’Driscoll will also be remembered in this game for putting in a ferocious hit on Danie Rossouw which left the South African barely able to stand after just two minutes on the field.

Lions fans to this day still debate the legitimacy of Jaque Fourie’s incredible finish in the 74th minute to take a late lead, but after Stephen Jones levelled the scores with two minutes left to play it was O’Gara’s mistake which gave Morné Steyn the opportunity to secure an epic win.

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Whether you’re a British & Irish Lions fan, South African or just a neutral this game has to go down as one of the greatest test matches in history.

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