South Africa captain Graeme Smith paid tribute to the West Indies after his side were beaten by five wickets in the Champions Trophy.
"You have to give Ramnaresh Sarwan and Brian Lara credit. They were under a lot of pressure but really set up the game," said Smith.
"We were probably 10 or 15 runs short at the end."
Coach Eric Simons added: "At 246 we felt we could have had a few more and that might have made the difference."
It was South Africa's 11th defeat in 12 one-day matches but Simons insisted it was "not all doom and gloom" in the dressing room.
"A lot of things have been achieved and a lot of lessons have been learned during this tournament.
We have to go home and look at things and see where we go from here."
Opening batsman Herschelle Gibbs at least had the satisfaction of a century after going 10 one-day internationals without reaching fifty once.
"I have never really doubted my ability," said Gibbs.
"A bad run of form is something every batter goes through.
"It isn't a nice place to be but in the last three weeks or so I have been going about things the way I've done in the past.
"I got the feel of the wicket and figured it was quite slow. "