Siya Kolisi's post-match comments about Ireland were above and beyond
"Congrats to them."
Ireland, the number one ranked team in the world, beat the reigning world champions in an epic battle at the Stade de France, with Mack Hansen scoring the team's only try of the game.
Siya Kolisi's post-match comments about Ireland.
"We would have loved to win but it was a great game, an intense game," Kolisi said on the pitch at the Stade de France following South Africa's loss.
"Congrats to them. They played really well. They were able to hold the pressure in the first half and they got the try.
"I am proud of the way we played. I think we left a little bit of opportunities out there and they also did. It was a great test for us in the group."
Kolisi on the importance of difficult games in the pool stage.
The South Africa captain, 32, also spoke about the atmosphere at the match and where the game was lost.
Kolisi said that such a tough game in the pool stage of the tournament was, ultimately, a positive thing, even if it didn't go his team's way on Saturday evening.
"This whole pool is exactly what you need going forward, you test yourself against the number one team in the world and it shows what they are capable of," he said in the post-match press conference.
"The atmosphere, the South Africans who came out from all around the world, the Irish fans who came out, it was amazing."
"I thought they were more accurate than us today, a bit faster to the breakdown," Kolisi continued.
"We knew it was coming. We got to their 22, but the opportunities we lost were all through the breakdown. Us as players take full responsibility. Hopefully, we meet them again but we need to be better with those opportunities."
— BKT United Rugby Championship (URC) (@URCOfficial) September 23, 2023
Kolisi on South Africa's chances in the rest of the Rugby World Cup.
The result leaves Ireland in pole position to finish top of Pool B - if they can beat Scotland in two weeks' time - and on course for a quarter-final clash against New Zealand.
South Africa, meanwhile, are on course to play hosts France in the last eight of the tournament.
Kolisi, however, isn't looking beyond the match against Tonga next Sunday (October 1).
"Obviously this game would have taken the pressure off going into the last round but the pressure is now on us to beat Tonga to get out of the pool," he said.
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"That is the sole thing we will focus on. We are lucky we have an eight-day turnaround to do our reviews, look at areas that didn’t go our way, what plans worked and what didn’t work, and take it from there."
"We are always prepared for any scenario," he continued.
"We speak open and honestly. We knew this pool was going to be tough. We’ve been in the same position before, we’re not going to shy away from it.
"We lost the game but the message is, ‘Don’t be down for long, it’s not going to help anything’. The quicker you get over it, the better it is for the group."
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