Add it to the list. Another great escape.

By now we should be accustomed to the All Blacks coming back to break hearts at the death and win against all odds, from circumstances no other team even entertains the thought.

Yet this team still manage to surprise with their ability to stand up when it matters most.

They didn't get it right by shunning the dropped goal and fluffing the last pass in Wellington. This though was a clear example they learnt from that experience. This time, they got the composure bit bang on.

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The All Blacks, very ordinary for large periods, looked dead. Down 30-13 in the final quarter, the inspired Springboks were in total control.

The All Blacks had no right to win. But with one of the best responses you will see they somehow rallied to stun the locals.

Three second half tries to Aaron Smith, Rieko Ioane and Scott Barrett got them within touching distance of the seemingly unthinkable.

New Zealand's players celebrate at the end the Rugby Championship match between South Africa and New Zealand at Loftus Versfeld stadium in Pretoria. Photo / AP
New Zealand's players celebrate at the end the Rugby Championship match between South Africa and New Zealand at Loftus Versfeld stadium in Pretoria. Photo / AP

Richie Mo'unga, who moments earlier got a favourable bounce with his penalty kick landing five metres out from the Boks line, then stepped up to nail the match-winning conversion. Cool as ice.

Just when it seemed the Boks would back up efforts in handing the All Blacks their first home defeat since 2009, victory was stolen from them.

This was a completely different match to Wellington three weeks ago. In many ways the Boks did an All Blacks to the All Blacks, setting the agenda with pace and tempo.

Losing Jack Goodhue to illness pre-match and Sam Cane, in serious discomfort as he left the field with a neck injury, after 35 minutes didn't help the All Blacks and the latter will be cause for concern.

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But it was obvious the Boks are now a different proposition.

Spurred on by a heaving Loftus Versfeld, they were men possessed, proving they continue to improve and deserve to be considered genuine contenders again.

Only after doing all the hard work here they couldn't finish the job.

South Africa's Jesse Kriel, right, runs with the ball as New Zealand's Aaron Smith, left, challenges during the Rugby Championship match between South Africa and New Zealand. Photo / AP
South Africa's Jesse Kriel, right, runs with the ball as New Zealand's Aaron Smith, left, challenges during the Rugby Championship match between South Africa and New Zealand. Photo / AP

Faf de Klerk led the charge for the Boks, outplaying opposite Smith. De Klerk, a constant threat with ball in hand, caught Smith from an early scrum and his kicking game was superb.

He was not alone. Malcolm Marx won penalties and snaffled turnovers; Eben Etzebeth was everywhere. So, too, Siya Kolisi. And the Boks midfield flourished.

Perhaps edgy given the importance of the rematch and cauldron atmosphere in Pretoria, the All Blacks were sloppy from the outset which only aided the Boks.

Largely through their own errors, the All Blacks were forced to defend for long, long periods, barely touching the ball in the first half.

Those energy-sapping efforts came back to haunt them in the second half when the Boks broke the game open.

The All Blacks conceded turnovers. They threw forward passes; Beauden Barrett's kicking game was out of sorts before shifting to fullback.

They were beaten at the breakdown, in the air on several occasions and lost a crucial lineout throw late after Cody Taylor was replaced.

Under the weight of relentless pressure applied by the Boks the All Blacks gave away penalties. Five in a row at one point as they desperately defended.

While the wheels fell off elsewhere to nullify attacking fluidity, the All Blacks defence initially held firm and they were fortunate to be level at the break.

Just after half time, though, cracks began to appear.

South Africa's captain Siya Kolisi, foreground, is challenged by New Zealand's Patrick Tuipulotu, right, during the Rugby Championship match between South Africa and New Zealand. Photo / AP
South Africa's captain Siya Kolisi, foreground, is challenged by New Zealand's Patrick Tuipulotu, right, during the Rugby Championship match between South Africa and New Zealand. Photo / AP

Damian de Allende profited when inspirational skipper Kolisi charged through Tim Perry and offloaded brilliantly. And midfield partner Jesse Kriel scored a stunning try bursting through Ryan Crotty and Waisake Naholo.

Victory was in the Boks' hands and then, just like that, it wasn't.

It was that quick and cutthroat in the final 10 minutes.

This was true character from the All Blacks; their bench, Ardie Savea once again shining, providing the difference.

Winning well is great but sometimes winning ugly is far more important.

Springboks: Jesse Kriel, Damian de Allende, Cheslin Kolbe tries Handre Pollard pen 2, con 3

All Blacks: Aaron Smith, Rieko Ioane, Scott Barrett, Ardie Savea tries, Beauden Barrett pen 2, Richie Mo'unga