S. Africa Repeats as Rugby World Champion

South African players celebrate after the Rugby World Cup final match between New Zealand and South Africa at the Stade de France in Saint-Denis, near Paris, on Saturday.

South Africa successfully defended its Rugby World Cup title and won a record fourth championship overall by holding on for a 12-11 victory over New Zealand in a thrilling final on Saturday in Saint-Denis on the outskirts of Paris.

Handre Pollard accounted for all of South Africa’s points at the Stade de France by kicking four penalties — all in the first half — as the Springboks posted their third one-point victory of the knockout stage.

After losing to then No. 1-ranked Ireland and finishing second in the pool stage, South Africa advanced to the final by beating host France 29-28 in the quarterfinals and England 16-15 in the semifinals.