Rugby World Cup-winning forward Mark Andrews said the Springboks made England look average in Saturday’s barnstorming 32-12 Rugby World Cup final win in Yokohama.
The Bok forwards were hugely impressive and gave their England counterparts no inch in what Andrews termed a “complete” performance.
Andrews‚ who played the bulk of his 77 Tests as a lock‚ played at number 8 in the 1995 final South Africa won 15-12 against New Zealand.
“It was as perfect as England’s performance was against the All Blacks last week. It was on that par.
“I’ve seldom seen a top side being demolished like England demolished the All Blacks in a long time.
“What England did to the All Blacks‚ South Africa did to England.
“They made them look like an average team‚” Andrews said.
“It started from number one to number 15. Games are won and lost in the tight five. They set a platform for the team to win.”
Andrews said England did expect to be hassled by the Springboks and in retrospect‚ added that the game they missed against France would have given them answers in regards with the real strength of their forward pack.
England’s pack dominated Australia and New Zealand in the play-off games‚ but came horribly unstuck against their South African counterparts.
“England didn’t play against the French pack because of the typhoon and that game would’ve given them an idea of how strong they really were.
“The All Blacks are a confident pack‚ but they haven’t got the talent of the Springboks.
“England hadn’t been tested and when they faced the All Blacks‚ they had to win that game to get to the final‚ while the All Blacks thought they’d just get to the final‚” Andrews said.
“England played their final last week‚ but in the Springboks‚ they met a side that was bigger‚ stronger and quicker on the outside than they were.
“Oddly‚ SA moved the ball more than they did in any other game. That caught England by surprise. We had them at sixes and sevens‚ while England expected box kicks.”
Andrews also said he’s had to take doses of humble pie in regards with Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus.
“I’ll be honest‚ I wasn’t sold when Rassie was made coach because of his tendency to over coach. He tried to control everything as a coach but he’s mature.
“When I was handing out Bok jerseys last year‚ what Rassie impressed on was that as a Bok player‚ you must ask for no favours and give no favours‚” Erasmus said.
“We brutalised the English pack and we made them look like an average side.
“The Boks went back to their strengths in terms of forwards and the backs were great. The Boks were phenomenal.”
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