Rassie Erasmus, South Africa’s Director of Rugby, has described South Africa’s 32-19 defeat to Argentina in Saturday’s second round of The Rugby Championship as “embarrassing.”
One week after suffering a 34-21 defeat at the hands of the Springboks in Durban, the Pumas produced a physical performance to end an 11-game losing streak in front of an ecstatic crowd at the Estadio Malvinas Argentinas.
The former Munster Director of Rugby was brutally honest in his assessment his side’s poor performance: “It was embarrassing and not the kind of performance you expect to see from the Springboks.
“We made only one change to the starting team from last week, when we dominated them. We have to point the fingers to ourselves, firstly as coaches and then as players, and we will have to fix it.”
Erasmus was not willing to use the travelling to Argentina as an excuse for the defeat, stating:
“We travelled a day later and in the second half we outplayed them because we were the fresher team. We were playing better rugby in the second half but we just didn’t make use of our opportunities.
“I’m not going to look for positives after a performance like that. We have no excuses, we knew exactly what to expect, we prepared for it but we just didn’t handle it,” added Erasmus.
The Springbok skipper Siya Kolisi scored his side’s only try in the opening half and the South African side delivered a much improved performance in the second half.
Replacement winger Lionel Mapoe, an early replacement for Makazole Mapimpi who suffered knee injury, scored twice in the right-hand corner after the break for his first tries in the Boks colours.
Argentina outscored the Springboks by four tries to three, with Nicolas Sanchez (fly half) instrumental, scoring 17 points courtesy of a try, three conversions, a penalty and a drop goal, and the home side lead 27-7 at halftime.
The Springboks next fixture in The Rugby Championship is at the Suncorp Stadium in Sydney on 8th September when they play Australia.