The nerves that the Springboks admitted were fluttering through them at the end of the first half, and the way they struggled to put Japan away before that, may have been the most positive thing for the Springboks as they look forward to the final fortnight of this Rugby World Cup.

After three easy victories in the pool stage subsequent to their defeat to the All Blacks, the Boks needed a proper examination of their big strong point, which is their defensive system. They also needed a test of their nerve. They got both at the Tokyo Stadium.

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