Cape Town - Joe Schmidt, head coach of the Ireland team that beat the Springboks 38-3 in Dublin on Saturday believes the visitors should not be written off despite the record scoreline.
READ: WE HAVE TO FIGHT BACK - COETZEE
Schmidt, who has turned Ireland's fortunes round since taking over in 2013, guiding them to two Six Nations titles and an historic win over the All Blacks last year believed the loss of tighthead prop Coenie Oosthuizen in the second minute through injury severely disrupted the visitors.
"I was really worried before the game because of the qualities of their players," he said.
"I grew up watching a Springbok team being pretty dominant and I don't think this one is far away from the best.
"Losing Coenie has an immediate impact on a team as he is a cornerstone of your scrum.
"It unbalances you a little bit after all your planning during the week," said Schmidt.
The Springboks must now pick up the pieces and prepare for France next weekend.
Although they lost 38-18 to the All Blacks, they were a much improved side in the second half after going into half-time 31-5 down.