Springbok coach Peter de Villiers saluted his team
Springbok centre Jean de Villiers is claiming the right to be named as the first South African captain to win a Test in Dunedin after he led his side in the final eight minutes of their 30-28 triumph over the All Blacks.
De Villiers took the captain's armband when acting skipper Victor Matfield - World Cup winning leader John Smit was back home nursing a groin injury sustained in the first Test - was sent to the sin-bin for a high tackle.
"I asked the question in the team room after the game that because I was the captain when we won the game does that make me the first Springbok captain to win a game in Dunedin?" said de Villiers.
"It took us nearly 100 years to win in Dunedin, and it might take us another 100 years to win another one, but we're still ecstatic.
"The guys have been working hard on what we did wrong last week and we seemed to get it right today.
"Three years ago we lost it in the last four minutes, but this time we stuck to our guns and came through."
After the disappointment of losing his first Test as Springbok coach the previous weekend, Peter de Villiers was overjoyed at seeing his side notch a first win in 87 years in Dunedin.
"The players worked hard. They are the world champions and they knew they had to uplift their game and they did," said the Springbok coach.
As for his counterpart, Graham Henry, he was left to rue the end of a 30 match unbeaten run for the All Blacks on home soil that stretched back to 2003. The All Blacks' coach did at least have a losing bonus point to ease his worries as the Tri Nations champions reamined on top of the table.
"It was a fabulous game of rugby and they finished up winning the game. Congratulations to them for that," said Henry.
"It was a great play by Ricky Januarie that pulled it out of the fire for them. But I'm still proud of my guys.
"They played their best half of rugby this year in the second half, but we didn't quite clinch it. There are a lot of guys who haven't got a lot of experience at this level who will have grown because of this and we become better players as a result."