English reaction: All Blacks will learn from 'collective stupidity' against South Africa, says England great

In the wake of Saturday's 36-34 defeat to the Springboks, the All Blacks will learn from their match-defining mistakes and come back a better side, according to former England fly-half and now well respected pundit Stuart Barnes.

In the dying moments of Saturday's loss, the All Blacks refused to attempt a drop-goal, which would have seen them record a one point victory, instead opting to run the ball in search of the tryline.

However, the plan of attack failed, as Willie le Roux forced an error from Damian McKenzie, earning South Africa their first win on Kiwi shores since 2009.

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A drop goal would have seen the All Blacks avoid last night's loss. Source: 1 NEWS

Writing in his column for the Sunday Times, Barnes lamented the decision not to opt for the goal as "stupidity."

"I'd rather put it down to a collective stupidity than individual cowardice," Barnes wrote.

"Whichever way, someone should have at least gone for the drop-goal. Rugby is about scoring more points than the opposition. It wasn't a seventh try required but a 37th point. So much for the stupidity."

But Barnes added he thought the loss would prove to be the All Blacks' gain.

"I suspect the nature of this first home defeat by South Africa since 2009 will prove to be a turning point in their drive for a third consecutive World Cup.

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The All Blacks failed to overcome South Africa, losing 36-34. Source: 1 NEWS

"It is more likely that the losers will prove to be the long-term winners as the testing of limits are replaced with the quest for controlled excellence."

The All Blacks have the current week off, before travelling to Argentina and South Africa for the last two fixtures of the 2018 Rugby Championship.

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Barrett converted only two conversions from six in tonight's 36-34 loss to the Springboks. Source: 1 NEWS

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