Reaction to All Blacks Rugby World Cup final defeat to South Africa

English referee Wayne Barnes is under fire for his performance after the All Blacks lose a dramatic Rugby World Cup final to the Springboks at the Stade de France.  

The Springboks claimed their fourth World Cup title with a 12-11 victory over the All Blacks, which was marred by a yellow card to Shannon Frizell and a red card to captain Sam Cane.

These live updates are now over.

2:55pm - All Blacks coach Ian Foster has questioned the consistency of the Television Match Official (TMO) after All Blacks skipper Sam Cane became the first man red-carded in a World Cup final.

Cane hit Springboks centre Jesse Kriel high and made contact with the head. Initially shown a yellow by referee Wayne Barnes, after intervention by TMO Tom Foley, Cane's permanent dismissal was confirmed after further review, deemed to meet the threshold for a red card.

Cane's dismissal can be directly compared to that of Springboks captain Siya Kolisi, who made contact with Ardie Savea's head, but his yellow card was unchanged after review.

"I don't want the game to be about us talking about red cards," said Foster. "It is what it is.

"There'll be plenty of time to analyse that. There was an attempt [from Cane] to wrap, there didn't seem to be a lot of force in the contact.

"The hit on Ardie had a lot of force go into that contact and had contact on the head. The game's got a few issues it's got to sort out - that's not sour grapes."

Read the full story here.

2:25pm - All Blacks captain Sam Cane admits his red card in the World Cup final will haunt him for the rest of his life.

The flanker was forced to watch on from the sidelines as the Springboks clinched a 12-11 win to become the first nation to win the Webb Ellis Cup four times.

"So much hurt right now," reflected Cane. "It's actually hard to find the words to explain it.

"There's a lot of heartbreak in the sheds right now. It's hard."

Read the full article here.

1:54pm - In the 12 months since his addition to the All Blacks coaching staff, assistant Jason Ryan has proved himself a man who wears his emotions on his sleeve.

Turns out that holds truer than ever after losing a Rugby World Cup final.

The former Crusaders forwards guru was brought into the programme to fix a shaky pack that had coach Ian Foster on the verge of losing his job last year and much of the All Blacks' improvement can be traced back to his honesty in addressing the problems.

Read the full article here.  

1:33pm - Media outlets from New Zealand and around the globe have reacted to the All Blacks World Cup final defeat, with some hitting out at referee Wayne Barnes and the television match official (TMO).     

An English media outlet described the final as a "Non-Clasico" while social media slammed the TMO saying, it's an "absolute disease on this sport".   

Read the full article here.  

12:20pm - National Party leader Christopher Luxon has congratulated the Springboks on their Rugby World Cup victory.  

He also paid tribute to the All Blacks saying New Zealanders should be proud of the side.  

"Congratulations to South Africa on a 4th World Cup victory. The All Blacks played with great heart in a match that was as nail biting as every World Cup final should be," Luxon said on X.  

"New Zealand should be very proud of our team who threw everything at our greatest foe in the game. All Blacks forever!"

12:05pm - Mimosas were flying in frustration across the country on Sunday after a World Cup final that ebbed and flowed on the basis of some questionable refereeing decisions and featured more cards than Christmas Day.

Yet somehow – against all odds – the shorthanded All Blacks were still only a single agonising point shy of the Springboks.  

Result and TMO interventions aside, the prevailing sentiment among All Blacks fans seems to be one of pride, and justifiably so.

Here is Newshub's player ratings for the All Blacks. 

11:40am - Newshub received photos from around the country of people watching the World Cup final.  

Here is a couple of them.

Fans watching at the Auckland Marathon.
Fans watching at the Auckland Marathon. Photo credit: Supplied
Fans watching at Hokitika's Regent Theatre.
Fans watching at Hokitika's Regent Theatre. Photo credit: Supplied

11:32am - As the World Cup comes to a close, it brings down the curtain on the careers of a number of All Blacks.  

One of them is Same Whitelock - who is the most capped All Black of all time. 

He told Sky Sports the entire All Blacks camp is "gutted".  

"Everyone is gutted and I know everyone back home is gutted but you can't fault the effort," he said.  

"Everyone worked hard out there but we couldn't get the point. The belief in this team is awesome. The thing I am most proud of is the effort. The guys have always been working and I am proud of that tonight."

11:25am - All Blacks captain Sam Cane has failed to blame referee Wayne Barnes for his red card.  

"We know the collision has to be low, I got caught by surprise when he stepped back in my direction but it's no excuse," he said.  

"We have seen how things have been ruled but it was hugely disappointing. We have a lot of trust in each other, a lot of belief in each other and that is why it hurts so much. We really wanted to do it for New Zealand. 

"So many emotions I am feeling at the moment, on a personal level and for the team. We gave ourselves an opportunity. They are a bunch of warriors really. So proud of how far we have come, it hurts to fall at the final hurdle in the style we did."

11:20am - A dejected and disappointed All Blacks fullback Beauden Barrett says he's "proud" of his side despite the one-point loss.  

He told Sky Sports the All Blacks had plenty of opportunities to win the final but weren't able to capitalise.  

" was right there. But proud because we believed the whole game. At halftime, with 14 men we knew we had this game we had plenty of opportunities. We've got a hell of a group. We worked so hard. The last 16 months had been huge for us. Just wasn't our night tonight."

11:15am - Former All Black Angus Ta'avao has also paid tribute to Ian Foster saying he is a "great coach" and has a "great mind".  

Ta'avao told Sky Sports he has a lot of love for Foster since he has been coached by him.  

"Great coach, great mind and he does have a lot of care and love for the team," he said.  

"You feel that when he talks to you after the game and he's been pretty open, honest, especially this year about his whole journey. He's shed tears with what's been happening and has it always been fear of how he's been treated, no, but he always turns up to that job knowing what his role is and he never shies away from it."  

Despite the loss, Ta'avao believes Foster is leaving the All Blacks in a "good space".  

"I'd hate to think this one game where everything we've talked about would put a stain on that. I think he can go out on a high. We can be proud of how they finished, and I feel like he's leaving it and in a good space," he said.

11:05am - Former players have been quick to pay tribute to All Blacks coach Ian Foster, with Israel Dagg saying he leaves a "hell of a legacy".  

Foster has been heavily criticised during his four-year tenure as All Blacks head coach but guided his side to the final in Paris this morning.  

Dagg told Sky Sports his legacy goes all the way back to when he was an assistant coach with the World Cup-winning All Blacks in 2015.  

"A hell of a legacy. People forget that he assistant coached this All Black [team] probably through the greatest period," Dagg said.  

"When he took over from Wayne Smith and he had that from 2012 onwards to when he took over the head coach role, he won a World Cup. He never lost the Bledisloe, he won many Rugby Championships. He has arguably the most successful assistant coach record to date and then he gets the head coach role.  

"People will only remember that last period, so I think he should be extremely proud of the way he's carried himself through this period of coaching the All Blacks. It's a difficult task, everyone has an opinion of you, everyone has a selection.  

"We all couch selectors, but he's found a way and no one expected him even to make the World Cup and he got us there and we came so close. So I tip my hat to you Fozzie, I really do."

10:54am - Former All Black Mils Muliaina believes the New Zealand players should be proud despite falling to a heartbreaking one-point defeat in the Rugby World Cup final.  

"It hurts, it will hurt for a long time for these guys. No other All Black team has come through this much adversity and to do what they did to make the final they should be proud," he said.

10:50am - Outgoing All Blacks coach Ian Foster says the World Cup final defeat is "heart-wrenching".  

He hopes the New Zealand public is proud of his side who battled with only 14 players for the majority of the 80 minutes.  

He told Sky Sports following the game that he was "incredibly frustrated" with some of the calls that went against his side in the first half.

"It is heart-wrenching really, I saw a team who really wanted it but the red card put us behind the eight-ball," he told Sky Sports post-game.  

"We hung in there and really fought our way back. I can't ask for anything more from them. South Africa are a great team."

When asked if they didn't get the rub of the green tonight, he believed the All Blacks didn't.

"I don't think we did, certainly in the first half we were pretty frustrated with a number of things that were happening," he said.  

"It is finals football and you have to make your own luck and we weren't getting any. To come back and do what we did speaks volumes to what this team is like.  

"It is about the team, the team wanted to win a game of rugby tonight for ourselves and our country. I like to think the country saw a team that wanted to make them proud. I am incredibly proud, one kick here or there and it might have been a different story."

10:40am - The All Blacks have taken the stage to receive their runners-up medals, they're followed by the Springboks who collect their winners' medals.  

Captain Siya Kolisi is the last to take to the stage to receive his medal and for the second time, he will lift the Webb Ellis Cup.

Reaction to All Blacks Rugby World Cup final defeat to South Africa
Photo credit: Getty Images

10:32am - For a full run-down and highlights of the dramatic Rugby World Cup final, click here

10:28am - All Blacks captain Sam Cane says he is "gutted" after losing a dramatic Rugby World Cup final.  

Cane was red-carded midway through the first half for a dangerous tackle but was incredibly proud of his side for their effort for playing with 14 players for the majority of the final.

"Extremely gutted and disappointed, first of all, the boys had to play without a man," he said post-game.

"The courage they showed out there was incredible. Look it's tough and I would like to say well done to South Africa. Back to back. They have been an incredible team and again they have found a way to win."

10:23am - Prime Minister Chris Hipkins has congratulated the All Blacks for their performances at the Rugby World Cup.

He paid tribute to Sam Whitelock and Ian Foster for their contributions to the All Blacks.

Here is the full statement:  

The Government has congratulated the All Blacks on their effort in finishing runners up in the Men's Rugby World Cup in Paris.

"On behalf of New Zealand, I'd like to congratulate coach Ian Foster, captain Sam Cane and the rest of the team for their achievements. It's been an incredible seven weeks of rugby and the team has done New Zealand proud," Grant Robertson said.

The final saw the All Blacks play South Africa in a rematch of the 1995 Rugby World Cup final, with the All Blacks falling short by just one point. An outstanding and courageous performance by the team despite playing with 14 men for almost the entire game.

"The All Blacks ethos is all about the team and this was truly a full-team effort throughout the tournament with tries scored by 21 different players across the seven games.

"Special mention has to go to Sam Whitelock who became the most capped All Black against Italy and, fittingly, came up with the crucial turnover during the tense final moments of the quarterfinal win over Ireland.

"I would also like to thank head coach Ian Foster as he steps down from his role. He has had a challenging time as head coach, but he has come through with a significant achievement at this World Cup. Ian has had a long career with the All Blacks - twelve years - winning a World Cup as an Assistant Coach in 2015 and his significant contribution has to be acknowledged," Grant Robertson said.

Prime Minister Chris Hipkins paid tribute to all the fans cheering the team on.

"Whether New Zealanders have shown their support in France or from back home, I know it has given the All Blacks the extra advantage that helped them come this far," Chris Hipkins said.

"Well done again to all those who made these efforts possible, from the players and coaching staff to their friends and whānau who have supported them all the way. It's been incredible to see the team bounce back from that tough opening game against France and set the tournament alight.

"New Zealand looks forward to welcoming the team home and celebrating their achievements," Chris Hipkins said.

10:20am - Player of the match Pieter-Steph du Toit has thanked the Springbok fans for their support throughout the tournament.  

"The last few games were quite tough, each one we played as a final. Each one was by one point, so it was quite tough so we are quite happy with the win," he said post-game.  

"I guess as a team we like drama, having drama for the last few years and I think it helped us a lot as a team to cope with the drama and to handle it and I think it shows the resilience of this team and the whole of South Africa as well.

"For the whole of South Africa, we are honoured to play for you guys and the Springboks and when we go back home it's going to be a warm welcome for us and I really want to thank everyone for supporting us."  

Player of the match Pieter-Steph du Toit
Player of the match Pieter-Steph du Toit Photo credit: Sky Sports

10:08am- Former All Black Israel Dagg has slammed the referees for their performance in the World Cup final.

At halftime, Sky Sports panel of Laura McGoldrick, Israel Dagg and Angus Ta'avao ripped into Barnes' performances.

"This is our showpiece event that is being overshadowed by a couple of people, I had other names for them, that is just taking it into their own hands, taking the glory and gloss away from the players who have worked their absolute butts off to get out there," Dagg said.

"I'm honestly just fed up now. I know I'm going to sound like a sore loser here, but this is our showcase piece event that is being overshadowed by people out there in the middle, that is putting apprehension in the minds of our players and we've seen a snore-feast.

It wasn't just Dagg who was furious with Barnes' performance McGoldrick saying she couldn't "comprehend" his performance.
"I can't quite comprehend the last 40 minutes of rugby we have just seen for multiple reasons," she said.

"It doesn't feel like a final to me... but I can't understand and I'm struggling to watch the Wayne Barnes show that's unfolding in front of us."