Meyer talks up unlikely win
Rugby:After witnessing the worst half of rugby he had "ever seen", South Africa coach Heyneke Meyer insisted his side's 16-12 win over Ireland at the Aviva Stadium will move the Springboks two "steps forward".
South Africa came from 12-3 down at the break, as the two depleted sides kicked off autumn internationals with a forgettable encounter in Dubliin.
The Springboks trailed by nine after Jonathan Sexton kicked the hosts into a commanding lead, taking full advantage of a limp first half display from the visitors.
Ireland had failed to profit, however, when the Springboks lost JP Pietersen to a yellow card before the break and South Africa made no mistake when home captain Jamie Heaslip was sent to the sin-bin in the second half, and a Ruan Pienaar try, together with the boot of Pat Lambie, saw them home.
"For me this game means more than when we beat Australia 31-8 and scored five tries because it was a tough week," coach Heyneke Meyer told a news conference, referring to the loss of the likes of Bryan Habana, Juan Smith and Frans Steyn to injury.
"After speaking to the players at halftime, I said this was probably the worst half I'd ever seen and it's unacceptable and the guys responded to that... They showed a lot of character coming back and I think it will take us two steps forward."
Ulster's Pienaar was thrilled to play his part.
"I think we had a terrible first half," he admitted. “Our kicking game wasn’t that great. In the second half our forwards made a huge step up. We got a couple of good drives going, kept the ball and forced them to make errors.
“I’m very proud of the guys, especially in the second half.”
Asked if there was any sense of concern that South Africa had managed just one try, Pienaar said on BBC2: “Not really. It’s a hard place to come and play rugby. It’s a good Irish team.
“To get just one try is the least of our concerns.”