Image: Siphiwe Sibeko / Reuters

Sometimes a draw is worst than a lost and to draw a test match which you know you should have won is even worst than that.

The Springboks still have not lost in 2017 but Saturdays performance was not a step forward. Pieter Steph du Toit, Jaco Kriel, Siya Kolisi, Jan Serfontein and Kitsie all impressed on the day with Du Preez making another great contribution from the bench.

There was allot of good things the Boks did on the day but it was only in patches and next week we will need a full 80 minutes to even think of challenging the All Blacks in New Zealand.

We can also be sure that Hansen will pick his best side against the Boks which will put added pressure on this young team.

Tactics was my biggest problem in Saturdays test especially in that first half. It was almost if we have turned back the clock to 2016 and it was worrying that we still believe we can kick on Aussies back three and expect to retain the ball.

The less said about referee Glen Jackson the better so I am not even going to get into that as it is a wast of time and energy. What we do need to expect is that referees have different interpretations to the game and we need to learn to adopt to them.

We have enough changes to win this test and with three clear linebreaks we should have scored. Our finishing was not good enough and something we need to get right as the All Blacks do not give you allot of that in 80 minutes.

The Wallabies made over 300 more metres with ball in hand from 20 more carries than the Boks, while the visitors made close on 90 more tackles than the Aussies, missing only 14 for a 92% success rate.

Both sides kicked 23 times, but it was the Boks who carved off 842 meters via the boot, 150m more than the home side. Not that it was always at the right time, or executed that well. In fact, often they seemed to be too deep, giving the likes of Israel Folau and Kurtley Beale far too much time to deal with them.

In short our tactical kicking was poor.

The Boks made 18 handling errors 6 more than the Aussies and at this level it is nothing to be proud off.

Here is some stats from All out Rugby

Points: AUS 23-23 SA,  Tries: AUS 2-2 SA Goal kicking %: AUS 83% – 83% SA, Possession: AUS 53% – 47% SA, Territory: AUS 53% – 47% SA, Ball in play: 31 minutes

Attacking stats: Ball Carries: AUS 99-79 SA, Metres run: AUS 823-497 SA, Line breaks: AUS 4-1 SA, Tackle breaks: AUS 3-4 SA, Passes: AUS 166-95 SA, Good Passes: AUS 161-86 SA, Offloads: AUS 5-7 SA, Rucks won: AUS 86-54 SA, Rucks lost: AUS 3-1 SA, Mauls won: AUS 1-6 SA, Mauls lost: AUS 0-0 SA, Turnovers conceded: AUS 6-9 SA

Defensive stats: Tackles made: AUS 78-167 SA, Tackles missed: AUS 10-14 SA, Tackle success: AUS 89% – 92% SA, Tackle turnover: AUS 1-0 SA, Dominant tackles: AUS 5-5 SA

Kicking stats: Kicks from hand: AUS 23-23 SA, Metres kicked: AUS 689-842 SA

Error stats: Handling errors: AUS 12-18 SA, Penalties conceded: AUS 6-7 SA

ct from the bench. Loads of good things today, but only in patches. Patience

Allot to work on this week and a huge challenge against the world number team, the All Blacks

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  1. We had some real opportunities go to waste. Serfontein at the end butchered a try, he knew he wasn’t fast enough and had Skosan screaming on his inside the outside. A simple pass would’ve gotten us the try, instead he was tackled 2 meters short and not long after the ball was turned over. Jantjies drop kick was charged down, kolisi gathered, we were on the front foot, again conceded the turn over.

    These things happen but we need to be a lot better this coming Saturday if we want to even compete, let alone beat the All Blacks.

    The teams conditioning seems a lot better than last year, looked as if we had another 10 minutes in the tank at the end.

  2. I would seriously consider starting Du Preez against the ABs, we might just need the extra grunt from the start.

  3. @Aldo: A lost opportunity to chalk up an away victory indeed, but maybe that will help us. Speaking to the media here in NZ, Retallick feels the Boks “are coming here with a bit of anger over that draw in Perth” and ” we all know how the Boks play – physical especially up front and they like to come at you”.

  4. Strange to hear more positive stuff on the Boks from the All Blacks players themselves than from the SA media.

    Ryan Crotty had this to say: “it doesn’t get any bigger than a test against South Africa at home, this will excite the lads” and “the [Boks] team is really connected, trending towards the way the Lions played Superugby, with more width and playing out the back of forward runners off 10 [ someone please explain that – it sounds complimentary, anyway and I was just a dumb looseforward in my day ha ha ]

    He went on, ” at 9 and 10 they’ve got the same pivots as the Lions, the same hooker and the same #7 and they’re starting to trend the same way as the Lions which is exciting because it is a good brand of footy”.

    DavidS please contain yourself if you read this – it may even generate some love towards a New Zealander which for you will be remarkable

  5. There have always been respect between the two teams. It is almost like when the Blue Bulls and WP played in the old days, does not matter how bad a team or good a team is at that moment every game is a classic.

    Atleast we know NZ and their media do not play up teams in the media

  6. @out wide: Come on, a couple of months ago , playing the Lions was the biggest challenge and what an All Black dreamed about. 4 weeks ago it was playing Aus in a bledisloe match. Now it is us. The All Blacks media liaison need to find some mew cliches. Otherwise we might soon hear Italy in Rome is what an All Black player dreams about.

  7. Quick Q: I like Eben and think he has matured as a player since taking over the captaincy which is great.

    However – impact wise he lacks IMO. We hardly get any go-forward when he carries, unlike PTSD and Mostert. Line-out – ok, here he is good and maybe he does give a bit of umpf to the scrum but open play I have not seen much. Defense is ok but you would expect that from a bok.

    Any thoughts.

  8. @JT:

    Mostert throws his body around but he rarely ever tackles anyone backwards nor makes a linebreak ball-in-hand. Etzebeth does both. IMO he is one of the few that would make it into a world’s best side along with Marx and Kitschoff.

  9. Lock is the one position they have plenty of ‘world class’ depth. Eben, PSDT, Mostert and then LDJ (at a push) and my personal favourite Ruan Botha who has everything a Martin Johnson had including captain qualities.

  10. I agree that in the lock position we have plenty of depth. Also, I would not discount the impact that Eben has at scrumtime. He has really come to the fore as a captain. Looks like it suits him.

    What worries me for the Boks, is 9, 10( bar Jantjies, no one has been good enough), our centers that seems to have forgotten how to straighten the line and a back three that has very weak defensive abilities, as well as almost zero exit kicking skills. Bar Rhule, neither of the other two have added a lot on attack either, but then I’m not going to blame them for that, as our backs haven’t exactly set the world alight.

  11. @Aldo:

    Makes for dire reading these stats. Surely the worst two wingers (in spite of poor ball) in recent history!

    Woeful defence, not a single kick from them either. No wonder Bok’s exit kicking is non existent and all it’s all on Jantjies and Coetzee… neither with a huge boot.

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