All Blacks captain Kieran Read was delighted to come out of a tough Newlands Rugby Championship Test with a 25-24 win over South Africa on Sunday.
Read said he was 'pretty happy' to come out with the win after two teams had gone hard out for success, even letting their egos loose when playing 10 extra minutes in the first half with neither side wanting to kick the ball out for the break.
The All Blacks expected a reaction from a South African team facing adversity after their 57-0 loss in Albany and being back at home with all the comment they had been getting during the week.
"Our guys will learn from it but when you are in that situation you have to remain as calm as you can and the boys did that – they did enough and we'll take the win," he told SKY Sport.
Read said he wasn't worried during the game but they may have lacked some energy early. However, the team had heart and character and when they had their minds on the job when they needed to step up they were able to come through.
He said fullback Damian McKenzie and David Havili when he came on to replace Nehe Milner-Skudder who suffered a shoulder injury, had given the side impetus when they needed it.
"It was great to play the Springboks here, a great Test match and one of those ones that you will remember," Read said.
Read paid tribute to his complete squad who all contributed to having the side at their best for their Saturday game.
Coach Steven Hansen said it had been a great Test match and it was great to see South Africa not disappoint them, which they never did when hosting the All Blacks.
They had given the All Blacks 'a heck of a game' and they would take more lessons from the game.
"People back home should be extremely proud of them, they showed a lot of character tonight," he said.
While he went to his bench earlier than usual in the second half he pointed out the first half had gone for 50 minutes so the players came out about their usual time.
But the players had been asked for effort when being introduced. Patrick Tuipulotu had provided the physicality they sought and he added they were happy with everyone who came off the bench.
The effort of Havili and McKenzie combining to score a key try had been important to the win.
"You've got two young guys who are going to take a bucket load of confidence out of being under an extreme amount of pressure and come out and know that they can do things well and there's no doubt that try was the catalyst for us winning the game," he said.
There were players who were missing and that had allowed new players to have a chance and that would only make the All Blacks stronger, he said.
South Africa coach Allister Coetzee said while they needed a win, they had made 'unbelievable strides' by backing their processes and the Test was the end result.
"Coming from 57-0 a few weeks ago to lose by one point and drew against Australia showed the character of this side, this group of players. The big boys played well tonight and I think they did the job," he said.
They had put the pressure on their side in all areas to perform and had achieved balance and he was happy the side had sustained, and absorbed, pressure well.
Coetzee added they were now looking forward to the Rugby World Cup in 2019 because the two teams were in the same pool and it would be a good opening match.
Player of the match South African hooker Malcolm Marx said they had worked all week on achieving the finish they hadn't managed in Albany. There was a lot of spirit in the side, they had played well and it was a pity they didn't come away with the win, he said.
Marx said his team-mates gave him a lot of energy and they deserved credit and it had been a great effort to turn things around.