Rugby Championship

Coetzee hails 'fantastic' Bloem Test

2017-10-02 06:57
Allister Coetzee (Gallo Images)

Bloemfontein - Supporters might disagree given that it was another frustrating result, but Springbok coach Allister Coetzee says that Saturday's 27-27 draw with Australia in Bloemfontein was a "fantastic" Test match. 

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It was the second time this year that the sides have shared the spoils, but more important is that it was a result that did very little to lift the pressure off Coetzee following the 57-0 hammering his side suffered against the All Blacks last month.

That remains South Africa's only Test defeat of the year, but they are also winless in their last three and now have the daunting prospect of taking on the All Blacks at Newlands this Saturday. 

Coetzee was trying his best to highlight the positives after the match, and he was happy with the improvement following the All Black loss.

"It was a fantastic Test match. That is what people want to see from Test match rugby," Coetzee said.

"The physicality was right up there, the skill sets were there and some great tries were scored.

"Michael (Cheika) is obviously busy with his process and he’s been under pressure as well. You can see that the players are responding and they’re getting things right.

"We are in a similar situation. I understand that you have to win, but they came out here to play and put us under pressure in the first 20 minutes to work on that emotional scar that we probably had from the New Zealand Test, but I’m pleased with the way that we responded."

While he was happy with the overall performance, Coetzee did acknowledge that drawing at home felt like a loss, and Australian coach Michael Cheika also felt that his side had done enough to win.

"Very disappointed," Cheika said.

"I thought we worked hard enough to get a win, but it wasn't to be.

"Playing away from home, it feels a little bit better, but not a lot. We want to win footy matches."

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