The All Blacks pulled off a last gasp 32-30 win over the Springboks yesterday morning in Pretoria, with South African rugby critics slamming the hosts for their ill-discipline and praising the New Zealand side's mental toughness.
South African rugby writer Jon Cardinelli who works for SA Rugby Mag said the Springboks' poor discipline and over confidence in the first 60 minutes of the Test was costly.
"The Boks were in charge of the contest for the better part of 60 minutes. Indeed, when Cheslin Kolbe was awarded a try in the 59th minute, the partisan crowd at Loftus started to celebrate as if South Africa had scored their second win over the All Blacks in the space of three weeks," wrote Cardinelli.
"The Boks led 30-13 at that stage. They should have put the All Blacks away. Instead, they started to give away penalties, fall off tackles, and concede acres of territory.
"Rassie Erasmus may come to lament some of the substitutions he made during that period. The fact of the matter is that the Boks weren't up to repelling the All Blacks in the dying stages, and the tactical display contrasted that of the first 50-odd minutes."
Another South African journalist Ashfak Mohamed who writes for iol.co.za praised All Blacks skipper Kieran Read and his side for their mental fortitude and belief.
"Having already clinched the title against Argentina last week, it would've been easier for (the All Blacks) to just go through the motions in front of a hostile Loftus (Versfeld) crowd," wrote Mohamed.
"But Kieran Read and his team never gave up, with (Rieko) Ioane strolling over in the 62nd minute to begin the comeback, before Scott Barrett and Savea clinched an enthralling triumph.
"The Boks didn't deserve to lose, but the laboured approach in the first half will be a valuable lesson to them that they have to adopt a positive, attacking approach at all times if they want to be World Cup contenders."