South Africa make winning World Cup bow
South Africa's Joel Stransky is congratulated on a try against Australia in the opening game of RWC'95 © Getty Images
Fly-half Joel Stransky was the star for the hosts notching a try, four penalties, a drop goal and a conversion in front of a capacity 51,000 crowd. Winger Pieter Hendriks grabbed the hosts other try while Phil Kearns and Michael Lynagh dotted down withe Wallabies' fly-half added two penalties and a conversion.
South Africa went on to claim a dream victory in the last major event of the sport's amateur era - beating New Zealand 15-12 after extra time with Stransky again the pivotal figure, kicking the match-winning drop goal.
Tries from Geordan Murphy and Austin Healey propelled the Tigers to victory but the final is best remembered for a piece of foul play by Leicester flanker Neil Back.
With his side trailing by six points, Munster scrum-half Peter Stringer prepared to feed a scrum in an excellent attacking position. But Back knocked the ball out of his hands and into the Leicester side in a game-changing act of skulduggery that was missed by all the officials. "On such small matters, games turn; finals are won and lost. It was not Back's finest moment," wrote Eddie Butler in the Observer.
Tries from Andrew Blowers, Carlos Spencer, Charles Riechelmann, Eroni Clarke, Johnny Ngauamo and Jonah Lomu along with 15 points from the boot of Adrian Cashmore saw the New Zealand side sweep their South Africa rivals aside.
Rugby league giants Wigan had previously hammed their union counterparts 82-6 under the banner of the 13-man code at Maine Road.
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