Erasmus praises South Africa after win over England

Eddie Jones

"When we managed to keep the ball, England were under the same stress we were early in the game". We had two young wingers winning their first caps with an outside centre on his second cap.

Despite the ballooning scoreline against them‚ the Springboks kept their composure and crucially‚ they did not panic.

"Coming back from that deficit was great, but it was far from the complete performance‚ and we all know that".

"Last week wasn't the start we wanted and this wasn't the home start we wanted".

Kolisi, who captained the Boks for the first time, said: "I was very nervous as we didn't expect to have such a tough time early in the game, but we have guys who had been in situations like that before. I was worried‚" said Erasmus. I think I played 36 Tests and that felt like a lot to me.

After going down to Wales in hard conditions in Washington in his first Test in charge of the Springboks, new national head coach Rassie Erasmus has spoken about the relief he felt after winning the first Test against England last weekend.

England head coach Eddie Jones has urged his side to improve their discipline after defeat in the opening Test of the their three-game series in South Africa.

But Erasmus said success had been narrow.

"They could have put us away‚" Erasmus acknowledged.

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"We obviously would have wanted to start better today, but the character the guys showed was incredible".

Despite the defeat though, Jones says his side can take positives heading into next weekend's second Test on Saturday. We were almost very, very good, so hopefully we can string a few things together and get that 80-minute performance next week.

He vowed to continue building depth in his squad and was keen to underline the perils that come with it.

"But we will try a few other things".

"It was a tactical mistake on my part, but as soon as we realised we needed more width on defence, and the players adapted on the field, things started going our way", said Erasmus, who admitted that the Boks will have to make a number of "brave decisions" in the next couple of months. We have to put certain guys under pressure. Late tries from Maro Itoje and Jonny May allowed them to come close to snatching a win at the end.

On the half-hour mark it was game on when a Springbok attack down the right was revived through their tenacity before De Klerk's vision offered the lightning-fast Nkosi a half-chance.

Le Roux then turned scorer from a scrum after De Klerk and Pollard, combined with Nkosi keeping his width, provided the platform for him to exploit a large hole in midfield.

"The frustration, for me, of not getting it quite right means that I just want to rip into it this week and if it was up to me we would be playing again tomorrow".

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