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Last Updated: Sunday, 14 October 2007, 21:29 GMT 22:29 UK
South Africa v Argentina

Argentina captain Agustin Pichot congratulates South Africa flanker Schalk Burger after the Boks' victory
Pichot was dignified in defeat after a superb World Cup for Argentina
Argentina captain Agustin Pichot paid tribute to his team after their World Cup hopes were ended in the semi-finals by South Africa.

The Pumas were the first team from outside the Tri-Nations or Six Nations to reach the last four.

"South Africa were the better side - they are a world-class team," he told BBC 5live after their 37-13 defeat.

"We gave everything and I'm very proud of the boys. There were lots of errors and we paid for our errors."

Argentina had lit up the tournament from the first match, when they beat hosts France, who they will now meet again in the third-fourth place play-off on Friday.

We made a lot of errors and paid a high price

Departing coach Marcelo Loffreda

The South Americans went on to beat Ireland and Scotland in their run to the last four but in the end they came up against a side with just too much firepower.

Coach Marcelo Loffreda, who will now join Leicester as their coach, joined his captain in praising their conquerors.

"South Africa are a very good team - they are very consistent and I have to congratulate them - they played a very good game," he said.


The Pumas trailed 24-6 at half-time but they scored through Manuel Contepomi soon after the interval and could have cut the gap further, only for Ignacio Corleto to run a kickable penalty and lose possession.

"I thought maybe we could come back but the lead stayed at 11 points and we could not get any more points," said Loffreda.

"If we could have kicked the penalty, when we took a quick one, it may have changed but we lost the chance.

"We made a lot of errors and paid a high price but rugby is like that - you cannot waste your possession and this is what happened."

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