Rassie Erasmus took responsibility for the Springboks’ 32-19 loss to Argentina in Mendoza on Saturday.
A week after beating the Pumas 34-21 in Durban, the Boks produced their worst display under Erasmus. They trailed 27-7 at half-time, and while they dominated the second half, they never looked like overhauling the hosts.
When asked by SuperSport’s Matthew Pearce about the team’s disappointing performance on defence and at the breakdown, Erasmus said they were disappointed with the performance in general.
‘We had so many opportunities to score tries in the first 15-20 minutes,’ he said. ‘We just didn’t capitalise on that.
‘We played like a team that’s playing club rugby. I must point the finger at myself. When you play like this, the coach did something badly wrong during the week.’
‘It’s not an excuse, because we are picking and coaching the team, but with Mapimpi going off and Lionel [Mapoe] having to go to wing, and Aphiwe [Dyantyi] and Lukhanyo [Am] being youngsters, they’re going to go through these games when they are rattled and they have to learn how to handle it.
‘I don’t want to say we learn, we learn, we learn. We had a terrible performance, it was unacceptable… we can’t perform like that in a Springbok jersey.’
Erasmus said the team would have to turn things around against the Wallabies in Brisbane.
‘We had certain plans that we wanted to try against Australia, but that’s out the window now. We have to get back to winning ways again, it’s win at all costs now.
‘This puts us back quite a bit,’ he admitted. ‘We wanted to win this game [in Mendoza] and give a few other guys a chance against Australia, but we can’t do that now.’
Photo: Andres Larrovere/AFP Photo