Washington – Springbok coach, Rassie Erasmus, expressed his disappointment following South Africa’s close 22-20 loss to Wales in a Test match played in Washington on Saturday.
The former Munster coach, who was in charge of his first game for the national team, watched as the Springboks fought back from 14-3 down at half-time only to lose at the death, giving Wales their third win in a row over South Africa.
Wales were the far better side in the first half, scoring tries through fullback Hallam Amos and scrumhalf Tomos Williams, with flyhalf Grant Anscombe landing two conversions.
The Springboks replied with a solitary penalty from flyhalf Elton Jantjies.
South Africa scored two tries of their own in the second half, thanks to wings Travis Ismaiel and Makazole Mapimpi, both of which were converted by Jantjies.
A further penalty by replacement flyhalf Robert du Preez saw the Springboks lead 20-17 but Wales had the final say with a try from Ryan Elias to snatch victory.
Although it was an experimental Springbok side with seven debutants starting and a further six on the bench, Erasmus was disappointed to see his team lose at the death.
“We didn’t get the result we wanted and that’s disappointing because no one ever wants to lose a Test match,” Erasmus said.
Erasmus blamed the team’s defence in particular, which on the day was certainly not Test match sharp.
“There were a lot of defensive errors and we have to improve,” he said.
The Springbok mentor also laid blame on a poor kicking game from the Boks, something that will need to be addressed for the upcoming series against England
“All three of Wales’ tries came from kicking errors and overall it was very tough,” said Erasmus.
The Boks must now regroup for the first of three Tests against England at Ellis Park in Johannesburg on Saturday, June 9.
Tries: Amos, Williams, Elias
Conversions: Anscombe (2)
Tries: Ismaiel, Mapimpi
Conversions: Jantjies (2)
15 Curwin Bosch, 14 Travis Ismaiel, 13 Jesse Kriel, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Ivan van Zyl, 8 Dan du Preez, 7 Oupa Mohoje, 6 Kwagga Smith, 5 Pieter-Steph du Toit (captain), 4 Jason Jenkins, 3 Wilco Louw, 2 Chiliboy Ralepelle, 1 Ox Nche
Substitutes: 16 Akker van der Merwe, 17 Steven Kitshoff, 18 Thomas du Toit, 19 Marvin Orie, 20 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 21 Embrose Papier, 22 Robert du Preez, 23 Warrick Gelant
15 Hallam Amos, 14 Tom Prydie, 13 George North, 12 Owen Watkin, 11 Steff Evans, 10 Gareth Anscombe, 9 Tomos Williams, 8 Ross Moriarty, 7 Ellis Jenkins (captain), 6 Seb Davies, 5 Cory Hill, 4 Bradley Davies, 3 Dillon Lewis, 2 Elliot Dee, 1 Nicky Smith
Substitutes: 16 Ryan Elias, 17 Wyn Jones, 18 Rhodri Jones, 19 Adam Beard, 20 Aaron Wainwright, 21 Aled Davies, 22 Rhys Patchell, 23 Hadleigh Parkes