Mack Hansen’s try and five points from Johnny Sexton helped settle a thrilling clash between international rugby’s top two teams at a sold-out Stade de France.
Replacement fly-half Jack Crowley added a late penalty as Ireland stretched their winning run to 16 matches to take control of Pool B.
Andy Farrell’s men also retained top spot in the global rankings ahead of the defeated Springboks, who now have work to do against Tonga next week to avoid early elimination.
Cheslin Kolbe’s second-half try and a Manie Libbok penalty kept Jacques Nienaber’s side in contention before they ultimately fell short in a nail-biting finale.Pre-match talk was dominated by South
Africa’s bold call to name an imposing seven-one split of forwards and backs on their bench – a decision head coach Nienaber called a “calculated risk”.
Ireland impressively defused the so-called ‘Bomb Squad’ to bring the knock-out rounds within touching distance.
Story first published on the Irish Mirror