Springbok captain John Smit warned that although the 18-5 win over the All Blacks was vital to his team's morale, there is still a lot for them to work on ahead of the defence of their World Cup title.
The Boks gave everything they had against the All Blacks in Port Elizabeth and certainly cannot be faulted in terms of commitment and attitude, but it will be slightly worrying that they did not manage to score a single try in either of their home Tri-Nations matches this year when they had their first-choice line-ups on the park.
Smit admitted that it was a huge relief to finally register a win this year after a second-string team was drubbed on both sides of the Tasman in Australasia before they capitulated to the Wallabies in Durban last weekend, but the Bok skipper warned that his side are by no means the finished article.
He said: "It has been a while since we have been able to sing and enjoy a win and to be able to do that in our last home Test and against the All Blacks was just fantastic. We are not there yet but it is certainly a step in the right direction. The result will help the momentum and it will help our preparations.
"We have got two weeks before the World Cup starts so we have got lots of details to sort out but the positive is that the intensity was there, the commitment was there and the team spirit and guts that this team has shown for years," commented the front row veteran.
Smit was full of praise for the Bok scrum which stood up to the vaunted All Black pack and proved that they can mix it with the best.
"We put a huge emphasis on the scrum and it is an area that we have worked on so to get a good result tonight was fantastic. Jannie du Plessis had an outstanding game at tighthead and he really scrummed particularly well," said Smit.
Bok coach Peter de Villiers was also delighted with the character shown by his side to bounce back from the disappointment of defeat last week, and explained that the win was invaluable in that it will restore the faith of some fans in the team's ability to defend their World Cup crown.
He said: "The victory was a just reward for the hard work that we were able to put in a very short space of time. This win will do us good, and the people will start believing in us again."
Man of the match Heinrich Brüssow admitted that the team had felt that they had some important debts to pay after their average performances in recent times.
He said: "I think as a team we have really struggled and we needed this win especially just before the World Cup and the guys are really glad. I think we owed it to our coaching staff and we owed it to all the fans.
"I think that what won us the game today was the team effort, I think we played for each other and we played for the country and it is just really great to have a win behind us," added the Bok ball thief.
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