2005 Tri Nations Series

2005 Tri Nations Series

Rugby Union Tri Nations
Rugby Union Tri Nations Less

2005 Tri Nations Series

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Description:
The 2005 Tri Nations Series, an annual rugby union competition between the national teams of Australia, New Zealand and South Africa, was the tenth in the series. The competition is organised by SANZAR, a consortium of the three countries' rugby federations. This was the last year in which the Tri Nations was contested in its original double round-robin format, with each team playing the others twice.

The All Blacks won the competition, with the key being a nail-biting 31–27 win over the South Africa Springboks at Carisbrook in Dunedin. The All Blacks also retained the Bledisloe Cup by sweeping the Australia Wallabies in both fixtures. The Mandela Challenge Plate between Australia and South Africa was contested outside the Tri Nations.

Synopsis

The All Blacks were clear favourites going in, having come off a sweep of the British and Irish Lions. The defending champion Springboks entered with many questions, most dealing with the player selections made by coach Jake White. Many in South Africa questioned White's selections after a loss to Australia in the first leg of the Mandela Plate. However, the Springboks won the second leg to retain the Mandela Plate. The Wallabies entered with promise, but had been hurt by the loss of talismanic fly-half Stephen Larkham to a shoulder injury before the series.

The series began with the South Africa leg. In the opener, the Springboks came from behind to defeat the Wallabies at Loftus Versfeld. The 22–16 margin gave the Wallabies the...
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