South Africa scrape past Samoa to reach quarterfinals

Defending champions South Africa scraped past Samoa 13-5 in a bruising and highly-charged encounter to reach the quarter-finals of the World Cup as Pool D winners.

The Springboks faced by far the toughest test of their seven meetings with the Pacific islanders but a converted try from winger Bryan Habana and a penalty apiece from Morne and Frans Steyn, all scored in the first half, proved enough for victory.

Samoa, who scored only the second try the Springboks have conceded at the World Cup through George Stowers, exit the tournament with pride intact but will rue the dismissal of fullback Paul Williams in the 69th minute for striking Heinrich Brüssow in the face.

South Africa, seeking to become the first country to retain the Webb Ellis Trophy, move on to a quarter-final in Wellington next week, most likely against Australia.

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