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Thursday Nov 13, 2008

The Jean de Villiers moat incident vs Argentina in 2005

The Jean de Villiers moat incident vs Argentina in 2005

The Jean de Villiers moat incident - Argentina 2005

In November 2005 South Africa took on Argentina at the Estadio Velez Sarsfield in Buenos Aires in a match that was remembered more for this bizarre incident than for the quality of play on display. The Springboks won 34-23 in a physical and scrappy match that was watched by a typically passionate home crowd.

Fielding an entirely foreign based side for the first time ever, the Pumas produced three first half tries in the match that was to commemorate the 40th anniversary of tests between the two nations.

South Africa themselves managed three tries, but it was ultimately the boot of Percy Montgomery that sealed the win, with the fullback notching up 21 points in total on the day.

Shortly after the halftime interval, we saw an unpleasant incident that resulted in a yellow card for Bok center Jean De Villiers, and perhaps a new pair of shorts needed for Pumas wing Lucas Borges.

De Villiers forced Borges into touch he tried to wrestle the ball free so he could look to take a quick lineout. Borges hung onto the ball, and as De Villiers tried again to pry it from his grasp, he pushed Borges, who staggered backwards and went backwards over the advertising hoardings.

As it was a football stadium, instead of having grass on the other side of the boards as were accustomed to in rugby, there was a deep concrete moat between the boards and the spectators obviously a means of stopping the football crowds from getting onto the pitch.

Borges went south, headfirst, and if it were not for the quick thinking of De Villiers, who instinctively grabbed hold of his foot, he may well have been seriously injured from the fall.

Players joined, and they managed to get Borges up to safety before a scuffle broke out, with the chief instigator being the fiery Mario Ledesma.

The result was a yellow card for De Villiers, and a penalty to the Pumas, but thankfully Borges survived what would have been a freak accident. 

Time: 01:19


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