History favours the Springboks
November 5, 2008
South Africa skipper John Smit lifts the Prince Williams Cup in Cardiff last year © Getty Images
Wales will be looking to secure only their second ever victory over South Africa when the two sides meet at the Millennium Stadium this weekend.
The two sides have met a total of 22 times with South Africa having recorded 20 victories with the other clash between the two long-time rivals drawn.
Their first meeting was in 1906 when the Springboks triumphed 11-0 a St Helens and the most recent head-to-head was at Loftus Versfeld earlier this summer when the hosts recorded a 37-21 triumph to complete a 2-0 series triumph. Two tries from Jean de Villiers and others from Ricky Januarie and Bismarck du Plessis inspired Jake White's side to victory with fly-half Butch James weighing in with 17 points.
Wales' one and only success came in 1999 when the hosts won 29-19 in the official opening of the Millennium Stadium. Tries from Mark Taylor and Gareth Thomas and 19 points from the boot of Neil Jenkins saw the Welshmen end a 93-year wait for a victory against the Springboks.
Their last meeting in the Welsh capital came last year when the recently-crowned world champions won 34-12 to capture the Prince William Cup. On that day the Springboks ran in five tries with Jacque Fourie (2), JP Pietersen, Juan Smith and Ryan Kankowski all dotting down.
Wales v South Africa - Match Facts:
Played: 22; South Africa won 20; Wales won 1; 1 drawn
First Test: Wales 0-11 South Africa at St Helens, Dec 1, 1906
Latest Test: South Africa 37-21 Wales at Loftus Versfeld, Jun 14, 2008
Drawn match: 6-6 at National Stadium, Jan 24, 1970
South Africa's biggest winning margin: 83 points - South Africa 96-13 Wales at Loftus Versfeld, June 27 1998
Wales' biggest winning margin: 10 points - Wales 29-19 South Africa, Jun 26, 1999
South Africa's winning sequence: 9 tests - Nov 26, 2000 to present day.
* The countries have met on 22 occasions - South Africa lead the series 20-1, with one draw.
* South Africa are chasing a 10th successive victory over Wales.
* Wales prop Adam Jones will win his 50th cap on Saturday.
* Victor Matfield will become the most-capped lock in Springboks history, overtaking Mark Andrews' record of 77 Test appearances.
* Wing Luke Halfpenny becomes the 60th teenager capped by Wales in 590 Tests, joining a list that includes Gareth Edwards, Haydn Tanner and Keith Jarrett.
* Jaque Fourie needs one try to break the record of 19 for a South African centre in Test rugby. It is currently held by Danie Gerber.
* Wales centre Jamie Roberts celebrates his 22nd birthday on Saturday.
* South Africa will parade eight of their 2007 World Cup final-winning team this weekend - Matfield, J P Pietersen, Bryan Habana, Fourie du Preez, John Smit, Bakkies Botha, Schalk Burger and Juan Smith.
* Wales have not lost at the Millennium Stadium since South Africa beat them 34-12 a year ago.
It's time for those running Welsh rugby to stop trying to prevent its players heading to France and to start planning a future without them, writes Martin Williamson
Paul Eddison explains how the French sold English clubs down the river and why their domestic game will go from strength to strength
'Nothing can prepare you for the noise of the Millennium Stadium though, you just can't hear anything." Tom Hamilton talks to Cory Allen
Following a weekend where Wales suffered more heartbreak against Australia and the Aviva Premiership showed its class, the Monday Maul looks back at some of the key talking points