Owen Farrell provides incredibly sporting interview after England's loss to South Africa
South Africa defeated England by one point, on a scoreline of 16-15 in the Rugby World Cup quarter final.
England had led 15-6 with ten minutes to go but a try from Munster lock RG Snyman dragged the Springboks back into the game.
Handre Pollard converted Snyman's try to set up a grandstand finish and, with their outstanding replacement prop Ox Nché having won another penalty, Pollard stepped up in the 77th minute to repeat the dose and drown England's hopes of a second Rugby World Cup.
Remarkably, Pollard wasn't even named in the Boks' initial World Cup squad having picked up a calf injury in May, but he was quickly drafted in and his impact, just like in 2019, has been enormous.
The Leicester Tigers fly half replaced Manie Libbok in the first half of Saturday night's game and he delivered once more. Pollard wasn't the only fly half to impress on the night, with his opposite number Owen Farrell turning in a phenomenal display for England.
His drop goal early on in the second half was a kick so sweet is was worthy of winning any game, but despite the heartbreak, the England captain was very magnanimous in defeat.
"I'm unbelievably proud of this group," he told Virgin Media Sport.
"The crowd today was unbelievable. After a difficult loss like that, the only thing that stands with me at the minute is how proud I am to be English," he said.
"You can always look back and pick at bits but South Africa are obviously a top top side.
"They've shown that over the course of the World Cup and before that. We've been on a bit of a different journey over the course of this.
"But I'm just proud of where we've been at over the last couple of weeks, and where we've built to, and where this can team can go from now on."
As Farrell referenced, Englad had a choppy build-up to this World Cup, having sacked their manager Eddie Jones last December but, as ever, they made a big mark on the tournament. Farrell again re-iterated his pride in the group.
"It could be some people's last World Cups, and some people are going elsewhere, but I'm unbelievably proud of what we've done these last five months and whatever happens going forward, this team is going to be good."
'I'm unbelievably proud of this group'
'South Africa are a top top side' pic.twitter.com/sTYTcqIfLL
— Virgin Media Sport (@VMSportIE) October 21, 2023
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