Burger praises Australian fightback

Date published: July 18 2015

Springbok number eight Schalk Burger admitted his side's final 20 minutes cost them victory over the Wallabies in their Rugby Championship opener.

The 24-20 away defeat to Australia didn't seem likely when South Africa took a 7-20 advantage early in the second-half thanks to their second try of the game.

But a comeback that thrilled the Brisbane crowd then followed as tries from Michael Hooper and Tevita Kuridrani saw the Wallabies claim a fine victory.

"Unfortunately it didn't go our way tonight. Credit to the Wallabies as they fought back really hard," the impressive Burger told Sky Sports following the match.

"I thought we had a great first 60 minutes. We put them under pressure and then they came back at us so we'll have to reflect and see where it all went wrong.

"I think it was a good game to watch. We were working hard out there. Preferably we would like to have the ball in hand a bit more but it was a tough Test match and credit to Australia as we put them under the pump and they came out of it."

South Africa's defence for the majority of the game was outstanding as Burger, Francois Louw, Marcell Coetzee and Bismarck du Plessis stood out, with the former clearly having relished the physicality of the game at Suncorp Stadium.

"There's a big difference between Super Rugby and Tests," he added.

"You've got less time on the ball and tonight was one of those games. It was the first proper hit out for both teams."

Next up for the Boks is New Zealand in Johannesburg, something that equally excites the in-form Stormers man.

"It's a great challenge. Similar to this week there's a lot of history between the two nations so looking forward to it. The last time in Johannesburg we got one over them so let's see what happens next week," he concluded.