South Africa is playing like a B Division side, said Nick Mallet following a bumbling performance by the Springboks as they went down 17-23 to Australia over the weekend.
“Both teams tried hard, but it was just a good little battle between two B division sides. It wasn’t as though they were playing for the Championship.
They were just trying to fight their way out of a corner and South Africa unfortunately came out second best,” said Mallet.
“I’m just concerned about the fact that a poor Australian side, lacking confidence after being shown up by England and New Zealand, created more scoring opportunities than we did.
The Boks had an opportunity, especially going 14-3 up, to get a win away from home and they couldn’t do the job.
These two teams and Argentina are around about the same standard. And compared to what the Boks are going to face next week, it’s like night and day.
The New Zealanders do not miss opportunities like the Boks and the Wallabies missed in Brisbane,” added Mallet.
World cup winning coach Jake White said that a lack of succession planning is affecting the standard of Springbok rugby.
“A big part of the Boks’ current poor form is because the coaches who succeeded him failed to make any provision for their successors.
“When I started the Bok job, we had 175 Test caps, of which Breyton Paulse had 60 and Os du Randt had 40.
“I remember it like yesterday, it was the first Test for Eddie Andrews, Jacques Cronje, Fourie du Preez and Henno Mentz, and it was Schalk Burger’s second Test. That’s where we were in 2004.
“That same group, when they finished with me in the 2007 Rugby World Cup final, had 649 Test caps. That group played under Peter de Villiers and Heyneke Meyer, and in some games went over the 1000-Test mark,” said White.
The Springboks face a quality All Black side in Christchurch on Saturday and will need to up their game considerably just to remain competitive over 80 minutes.