The Four Nations Rugby Championship for the southern hemisphere teams was cut a bit short this season due to the World Cup and so there weren’t the usual home and away fixtures. Fortunately the single All-Blacks v Springboks game was scheduled for Ellis Park and so Jen and I had the opportunity of going along.
Just like last year we stayed in the Maboneng district, an area close enough to walk to the game but with plenty of restaurants that can also be walked to. That’s a rare event on an evening and we took full advantage with a visit to an Ethiopian place on the Friday night.
For a pre-match lunch on Saturday I ordered rib-eye steak, but what I think I actually got was a rib of beef. Either was it was pretty good. I’ll miss steaks like that when we’ve gone.
We got to the ground early enough to be able to queue for beers. At one stage I think the line was around twenty yards long and four people wide. Best to buy your beers a few at a time then.
As we sat with our drinks in the concourse, a couple of blokes in their seventies staggered past. One was in a New Zealand shirt, the other in the green of South Africa. They were so ratarsed that they relied upon each other to stay upright. I d like to think that I’ll still getting in that state when I’m their age.
The game was sold out and we had lower tier tickets in one of the corners. The view was ok, certainly better than last year when we were up in the back row of the upper tier.
South Africa were coming off a defeat to Australia and put a decent effort in against the visitors. They were leading going into the final stages but that rarely counts for anything against the All-Blacks who, as they so often do, nicked it at the death.
Twenty minutes after the final whistle we were in a roof-top bar making the most of an opportunity for a night out in town.