Springboks coach Allister Coetzee believes his team’s discipline cost them victory in their clash with the Wallabies in Brisbane on Saturday.
South Africa raced into a 14-3 lead after 20 minutes, thanks to tries from Warren Whiteley and Johan Goosen, but Australia struck back with a five-pointer from Adam Coleman and two Bernard Foley penalties which meant the Boks held a slender 14-13 lead at half-time.
The Springboks conceded several penalties after the break and the Wallabies capitalised on their opponents’ mistakes as Foley added another three-pointer from the kicking tee shortly after the restart before scoring what would prove to be the matchwinnnig try in the 62nd minute.
And although Morne Steyn added another penalty, which secured his side a losing bonus point in the 23-17 defeat, Coetzee feels the Boks have themselves to blame for squandering their early lead.
“I was really pleased with the start,” he said.
“But I’m starting to sound like a cracked record – our discipline let us down, which let Australia back into the game.
“They got territory from it and put us under pressure.”
Wallabies head coach Michael Cheika was relieved that his team had ended a six-match losing streak.
“It’s always nice to have a win,” an obviously relieved Cheika said.
Cheika admitted Australia were desperate for victory which led to some poor decision in the Test’s closing stages.
“Towards the end of the game we had opportunities to hit them on the counter, but there was just that anxiety of being in front and wanting to stay in front at all costs.”