Rassie Erasmus says wasted opportunities and ill-discipline cost the Springboks the match at Twickenham on Saturday.
The Boks slumped to a disappointing 12-11 defeat to England in their tour opener.
While the big talking point afterwards was referee Angus Gardner’s decision not to penalise Owen Farrell for a shoulder charge on André Esterhuizen in the last play of the game, Erasmus focused on his own team’s performance.
‘The two things which we didn’t do well was to finish our opportunities and our discipline,’ he said. ‘It doesn’t matter how you look at it, if you don’t finish off your opportunities and give away too many penalties, you will lose the Test match.
‘The lineouts were frustrating for me,’ he added. ‘[England lock Maro] Itoje was off with a yellow card and I thought we made the right call to opt for the lineouts instead of kicking for goal.’
Erasmus said he was pleased with the performances of Damian Willemse at fullback and Ivan van Zyl at scrumhalf. Willemse made his first start for the team while Van Zyl only had one previous start in the No 9 jersey.
‘For them, a match such as this one is a great learning curve and playing in those decision-making positions, I think they did well.’
The Springboks travel to Paris on Sunday and will play France next Saturday evening at the Stade de France.
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