15. Blair Kinghorn – 6
He recovered from a very shaky start, knocking on the South African kick-off and everything else that went into the air in the opening 10 minutes, to look one of Scotland’s more threatening backs. He cleared up a lot of loose ball in the first half, he looked effective when moved to the wing late in the game where he might have grabbed a consolation score for Scotland had Ali Price’s late grubber kick up the right flank been better directed. [Willemse 6]
14. Darcy Graham – 4
He kept the electric Cheslin Kolbe in his box but for Scotland to beat South Africa they needed to convert every opportunity that came their way. When Graham got the ball late in the first half wide on the left side of the field with Kinghorn and van der Merwe outside him in a 3-on-1, he had to make the pass. He didn’t. The little winger will own his howler but will probably be waking up with the sweats for the next week as a result of it. [Arendse 7]
13. Huw Jones – 5
Not a bad game as such but it is difficult to remember Jones getting his hands on the ball very often let alone doing anything clever with it? He did cut a super line in the first half but couldn’t quite hold onto Russell’s bullet of a pass. He knocked the ball on under no obvious pressure late in the game but that is what this Springbok’s defence does to you. [Kriel 4, very lucky to be on the field after the second minute]
12. Sione Tuipulotu – 6
Penalised for holding on early on although that was the fault of the clear-out team. He did make some dents in the Bokke line but not enough due, once again, to a lack of opportunity/ball. He was also run over by Pieter-Steph du Toit when the giant flanker scored in the second half but I am not sure the Scotland centre could have stopped him without the aid of an elephant gun. [De Allende 6]
11. Duhan van der Merwe – 4
Sat down on his backside early on by Siya Kolisi, the big winger never really got into this game. He popped up in midfield to good effect at least once but didn’t see nearly enough ball to impose himself. He failed to look after the ball in the early exchanges, he should have passed to Kinghorn at one stage and he was arguably caught out defending a little too narrow for Arendse’s try? [Kolbe 6]
10. Finn Russell – 7
A very Finn Russell sort of performance with a little bit of something for everyone. He too saw an early clearance charged down and he conceded a couple of penalties. He also made numerous excellent clearances, his kick-pass to Duhan didn’t come off but his 50-22 did. Two tackles late in the game, on Kurt-Lee Arendse and Grant WIlliams, probably saved two tries. Didn’t get enough quality ball to influence events as he would have liked. [Libbock 8 if only for that no-look kick-pass]
9. Ben White – 6
A mixed bag from the little Scottish nine who saw an early kick charged down and quickly realised he had to sharpen up. After that much of his best stuff, like his half-back partner, was in defence which shows the way the game panned out. Replaced late in the game by Ali Price. [de Klerk 7]
1. Pierre Schoeman – 6
The sturdy prop did well and helped win a scum penalty late in the first half for Scotland’s only points but he, and the rest of the front five, faded badly in the second half when the Bokke bomb squad filled their boots. He spilled the ball when Scotland were building a little momentum late in the first half. [Kitshoff 7]
2. George Turner – 5
Scotland lost three line-outs when Turner was throwing. One was definitely overcooked because Richie Gray couldn’t get anywhere near it. The other two may not have been his fault but who on earth was calling throws to the back early doors when Turner’s weakness is his arrows? [Marx 8]
3. Zander Fagerson – 6
Similar to his front-row buddies, Fagerson had his struggles in the set piece but he stuck to the task and in Steven Kitshoff he was up against arguably the best scrummaging loose-head in world rugby. [Malherbe 6]
4. Richie Gray – 5
Worked hard all afternoon and played his part in the first-half defensive effort but never really managed to impose his physical presence on the game. He was up against it at the sidelines where the Springboks reigned supreme. Replaced in the second half by Scott Cummings. [Etzebeth 6, Snyman 8]
5. Grant Gilchrist – 6
The big fella had a solid game against some of the best around. His physicality helped Scotland defend against the Springbok maul and his long levers helped win at least one turnover by holding Jesse Kriel off the ground with the ball in his hands. [Mostert 7]
6. Jamie Ritchie – 5
He conceded an obvious and dumb penalty at an early line-out which only added to the pressure that Scotland were feeling in the opening quarter of this game. Thereafter, he failed to match the fearsome physicality of the opposition while making his tackles. [Kolisi 7]
7. Rory Darge – 6
The openside flanker got through a mountain of work and made any number of tackles but proved a little ineffective at the breakdown where the sheer power of the opposition blew him, and anyone else in blue, clean off the ball. [du Toit 8]
8. Jack Dempsey – 7
A decent showing from the hard-working Aussie who carried relentlessly and with occasional success. He did well under pressure from Faf de Klerk at the base of the scrum. He was clocked early on by Jesse Kriel who should have seen red for the offence but it was somehow missed by the match officials. Why didn’t the Scotland management demand an HIA for Dempsey, if only to highlight the illegal challenge? [Wiese 6]
16. Dave Cherry – 5
Came on late and still Scotland’s lineout woes continued.
17. Jamie Bhatti – 5
Did nothing much wrong but the momentum was against him in the second half.
18. WP Nel – 5
At 37, the Edinburgh veteran is only there to hold up the world and instead he conceded a couple of scum penalties.
19. Scott Cummings – 5
He looked the part.
20. Matt Fagerson – 6
His usual workaholic self when he replaced Darge. He will surely get a chance to shine in the coming games.
21. Ali Price – 5
That grubber kick needed to stay in the field of play to give Kinghorn any chance but instead it bounced tamely into touch.
22. Cam Redpath – 5
He has all the skills but not so much physical presence. Still managed one smart offload in his short stint.
23. Ollie Smith – 5
Always worth watching, Smith remains a contender.