Springbok centre Lukhanyo Am has revealed why he opted against scoring and instead set Makazole Mapimpi up for a try in the World Cup final.
The Springboks lashed England 32-12 to clinch a record-equalling third World Cup title, with wings Mapimpi and Cheslin Kolbe crossing for the only tries of the game.
With a slender six-point lead heading into the final quarter of the match, a combination of slick handling down the left-hand touchline and a well-executed chip kick had the ball sitting up nicely for Am, who looked to be in for a try because there were no England defenders in front of him.
But the outside centre nonchalantly threw a pass to Mapimpi, who had continued to run a decent support line next to him.
In a candid interview with the Sunday Times of London, Am said there was no real thought process behind what is now considered to be one of the most selfless pieces of play ever.
‘I could have scored. There was no player in front of me. Elliot Daly was more behind me or coming from the side,’ Am explained.
‘If maybe he had tackled me, momentum would have taken me over. What came in my head was, “Don’t wait, don’t think about it, just make the pass.”‘
Am added he felt Mapimpi scoring the try would give further impetus to the wing’s inspirational rags-to-riches story and that it would have a greater impact on South Africans in the townships.
‘It really has been amazing. His journey from where he was to where he is right now. Back home that gives a lot of hope to people who feel they can walk in his footsteps. It is possible.’
Photo: Steve Haag Images via HollywoodBets