The Rugby Championship

Coetzee demands killer instinct from Springboks

Allister Coetzee has demanded South Africa show more "killer instinct" despite witnessing his side snatch a late victory in their Rugby Championship opener against Argentina.

The Springboks enjoyed swathes of possession on Saturday but struggled to find a way through the resolute Argentina line, and with they were 10 points adrift with 10 minutes remaining in Nelspruit.

But Coetzee watched on as the hosts scored two converted tries and a penalty in the closing stages to record a 30-23 victory, saying he never doubted they could recover.

However, he felt the Springboks should have never been in the perilous position given the opportunities they failed to convert.

"What we need is a killer instinct," said Coetzee. "There are places on the field we need execution and when you get it, then you have that killer instinct. 

"Every opportunity you get you must show a killer instinct and that is what is next for us, to get that right.

"We're pleased with the result, but we're not pleased with the 20 minutes before and after half time.

"We started well, we let it slip through opportunities we didn't take. We didn't take the points on offer and then the errors start creeping into our game and we find it difficult to apply pressure again.

"When the pressure is there and you don't put scoreboard pressure on, then it is difficult and we have to work ourselves out of the hole.

"I would say that for 40, 45 minutes I wasn’t happy but I was really happy with the last 15 minutes. That is what we want to see for longer periods."

And Coetzee is confident the Springboks will improve quickly if they learn from their mistakes in the future.

"The win is important in Test rugby - however it comes. To improve while you are winning - it is difficult, especially in the Rugby Championship to improve when you are losing," he added.

"We understand it isn't good, it isn't clinical but it is a work in progress. Argentina are a good side, I'm happy that our set phase went well, in an area they supplied the most pressure.

"If we get it right, get the control we aim to have then it will be a different ball game. That is where we are still struggling but that will come."