South Africa’s inability to take several opportunities and a lack of discipline cost them victory over England at Twickenham on Saturday, said coach Rassie Erasmus following his side’s 12-11 defeat.
The 46-year-old added it was frustrating to sit and watch as his side dominated a large part of the match but due to sterling defence by their opponents and handling errors they failed to build a match-winning lead while England kept snapping at their heels.
Erasmus, missing fullback Willie le Roux and scrumhalf Faf de Klerk who terrorised England in the 2-1 Test series win earlier this year, said there were still positives to be taken into next weekend’s Test with France in Paris.
“It was a frustrating match,” said the 46-year-old.
“However, it is what it is what it is and England beat us.
“The only thing that counts is the one point. We did a lot well and two things we didn’t do well… finishing and our discipline.
“If you do not finish off your opportunities, you pay the price.”
Erasmus, who was part of the South Africa backroom team for both the 2007 and 2011 World Cups, was especially frustrated his side lost the ball at two of their lineouts close to the England line in the first half when they were dominating the game.
“It is frustrating especially as (England forward) Maro Itoje was off when we had the lineouts,” he said.
“I don’t dispute going for touch, they were the right calls.
“However, losing the ball and then an overthrow is frustrating. There are not a lot of youngsters in the pack so we can’t blame it on inexperience.”
Erasmus, capped 36 times by South Africa, said world rankings don’t usually lie and the form had been borne out on Saturday.
“England’s world ranking is there to see (they are fourth) and I don’t know how much to read into that,” he said.
“They are above us (South Africa are fifth) so when you look at them we shouldn’t stand a chance.
“In the broader scheme of things clearly New Zealand and Ireland are number one and two respectively but others are catching them up.”