Another weekend of North v South down in the Southern Hemisphere and although the South came up on top in all three test matches this fails to tell the story.
First up was Ireland who deserved to beat New Zealand in Christchurch, at least should have drawn and ended up losing to a 80th minute Dan Carter drop goal. Next came Wales who deserved to beat Australia in Melbourne but fell to a 80th minute penalty that turned victory into defeat.
In both cases the Northern teams were desperately unlucky but the record books will simply reflect that they lost, and on the basis that rugby is an 80 minute game, the Southern giants showed why they remain so hard to beat by playing badly but still finding a way to win.
The third big clash of the day took place at Coca Cola Park, formerly Ellis Park in Johannesburg, the spiritual home of the Springboks where Nelson Mandela famously wore the number 6 jersey of Francois Pienaar during the 1995 winning world cup final.
I witnessed a first half in which South Africa battered England, even if their first two tries of the night after just eight minutes were both questionable. At the interval they led 25-10 and after 46 minutes the lead had been stretched to 18 points. A fearful beating seemed inevitable for England but, for the second week running, this young, inexperienced England side refused to lie down. Instead they fought back to within four points of South Africa before a late JP Pietersen try settled the issue.
Still, England won the second half 17-11 at altitude to show tremendous guts and character for such a young side. Toby Flood certainly added better direction and attacking options at stand off and Ben Youngs enjoyed a much better game, and snaffled two tries as well.
The three test series has been lost but England have played with great credit so far with the third and final test in Port Elizabeth to take place next Saturday. Ordinarily a 3-0 test defeat would be disastrous but Stuart Lancaster's men have showed great promise and will go to PE believing that they can win the final test. I hope they do because they have surprised all of us with their spirit.
If they are to go on and win the 2015 world cup - and they are a long way off that just now - then nights such as Durban and Johannesburg will have played a major part.