Former England coach Sir Clive Woodward has slammed the Springboks' style of play, claiming rugby will die in five years if the sport goes the way of the world champions.
Woodward, who coached England to the 2003 Rugby World Cup title, also praised the All Blacks as a team that's showing "proper rugby is alive and well".
In a column for the Daily Mail, Woodward said the way the Springboks played in their upset loss to the Wallabies last weekend, as well as their performances during their series win over the British and Irish Lions, should spark worry for the sport.
"I looked on in horror last weekend at the sheer poverty and boredom from the South Africa team against Australia," Woodward wrote. "Rugby was not — and is not — meant to be played like that and I'm just pleased Australia won.
"The Boks' series against the Lions was little better and it should worry everyone involved in the sport that rugby is going down that route. It will be dead in five years if it does."
Woodward also commended the All Blacks for the way they played during their 39-0 thumping of the Pumas.
"Thankfully, the All Blacks showed that proper rugby is alive and well when they hammered the Pumas and big congratulations to Quins and Bristol for last season as they demonstrated exciting, ball-in-hand rugby can be winning rugby.
"The ball must always be your friend, not a ticking time-bomb. What is the point of neutralising your best players, kicking the leather off the ball all day?
"I'd love to sit down with the South Africa team and ask them, 'Do you really enjoy playing this way?'"
Woodward isn't the first to criticise Rassie Erasmus' team, with former All Blacks coach Steve Hansen arguing that the Springboks' style of rugby was one nobody wants to watch.
"You've got two big packs and two coaches who don't have any faith in what's going to happen if they throw the ball around, so they just beat each other up," Hansen told Newstalk ZB last month.
"'Let's slow the ball down, let's get off our feet, do whatever we can to make sure our defensive line is stable so we can keep battering'.
"It's not a game that anybody wants to watch. Yes we want a good physical contest, that's what the game is all about – physicality, speed, using the ball and skill. Could you say we saw that in that series? Of course we didn't. And it turned a lot of people off.
"All of a sudden, the All Blacks became popular again - 'let's hope the All Blacks can save rugby'. It's not about the All Blacks saving rugby, it's about everyone that's involved in it taking some ownership and saying 'right, we need to do something here'."
The All Blacks will take on the Springboks in back-to-back Rugby Championship tests on September 25 and October 2.