Springboks coach Allister Coetzee believes he has come through the toughest period of his career after a miserable 2016 that almost saw him lose his job.
Coetzee's role in charge of South Africa looked under serious threat after just four wins in 2016, and a disappointing Rugby Championship that saw them lose to Argentina.
There was also a narrow defeat to Australia before two thrashing against New Zealand – the latter seeing the All Blacks win 57-15 in Durban on their way to the title.
It has been a different story in 2017, though, as Coetzee has revived the flailing Boks with five wins and a draw from their six matches, a run that has moved them into third place in the world rankings.
They face their biggest test of the year in Albany on Saturday, however, as they face the All Blacks for the first time since that drubbing in October, but Coetzee is pleased with how his side have reacted to a frustrating 12 months.
"It's been bloody challenging," Coetzee - who has made three changes to his side for this weekend's clash - told a media conference.
"Coaching at international level, especially with the rugby-mad supporters that we have, managing the moods of millions of people is never an easy job, but it comes with the job.
"I'm just pleased that we have changed it in a way.
"We made a few tweaks at the beginning of the year and our time for preparation in 2017 was really good with the camps we had pre the French series.
"We spent time on our team environment, which is a massive thing because we were a team in transition.
"You can see how the players have started to enjoy the game. I'm also pleased to note that our players have never been in a better conditioning shape than they are now.
"I'm happy with where we are but we're not there yet. We'll test ourselves against the world's best this weekend."
|Tom Brady disagrees with Donald Trump´s anthem comments|
|Guardiola uneasy over lofty Manchester City comparisons|
|Josh Norman: Donald Trump is not my president|
|FIFA ´applying common sense´ with expected poppy ban U-turn|
|Walker: It was a nightmare facing Aguero|
|Victorious Darcis sets up Zverev clash in Shenzhen|
|Promes a doubt for Spartak´s Liverpool clash|
|Dortmund meet Madrid again as Besiktas look to end drought - Champions League in Opta numbers|
|Castleford Tigers get six in Super League Dream Team|
|Villarreal promote coach Calleja to first-team duties|
|Ashes hopeful Westley faces anxious wait over hand injury|
|Donald Trump ´so proud of NASCAR´ for stance on protests during anthem|
|Zvonareva ousts fourth seed Begu in Tashkent opener|
|Napoli striker Milik set for long lay-off after knee surgery|
|Mourinho avoids FA punishment after being sent off at Southampton|
|Draxler predicts a ´spectacle´ when PSG face Bayern|
|Tevez challenged to prove his worth by Shanghai Shenhua|
|Mercedes avoiding complacency after Singapore ´surprise´|
|Bielsa has backing of Lille owner despite poor run|
|Shakhtar will attack Man City, predicts Fernandinho|
|Burki hopes Dortmund crowd can be key against Madrid|
|Zverev: Everyone would want Federer as a coach|
|Kroos returns for Madrid´s trip to Dortmund|
|Chelsea boss Conte: For sure, I will return to Italy|
|Neymar and Mbappe need time to settle at PSG, says Ancelotti|
|Aston Martin named Red Bull´s title sponsor from 2018|
|Walker´s World Cup hopes ended by ankle surgery|
|Villarreal sack Escriba after Getafe humbling|
|Mathieu hits out at Barcelona treatment|
|Lukaku and Raiola repeat calls for offensive chant to stop|
|Billy Vunipola would take pay cut to avoid burn out|
|Agar out of India tour with broken finger|
|De Bruyne keen on new Manchester City deal|
|Marcelino laughs off injury after hurting hamstring celebrating|
|Diamondbacks clinch home-field advantage in wildcard game with walk-off win|
|Brady, Rodgers inspire comebacks for Pats and Packers|
|Milan shouldn´t be losing to weaker teams – Fassone slams Montella´s men|
|MLS Review: Sporting KC, Portland keep pressure on|
|Bautista receives emotional farewell from Blue Jays fans|
|It´s been a wild ride - Schauffele revels in Tour Championship victory|
|Mixed feelings for FedEx Cup champ Thomas, despite collecting $10m bonus|
|Wenger unwilling to sacrifice any potential trophy|
|Kershaw breaks Dodgers record for most seasons with 200 strikeouts|
|NFL players react to Trump´s ´assault´ on freedom of speech|
|Kane worth more than £100m – Noble|
|Klopp: I could write a book on defending|
|Maddon all for self-expression as Cubs manager clarifies Trump comments|
|Stanley Cup champions Penguins will visit White House|
|Kyle Busch advances to NASCAR playoffs with New Hampshire win|
|Ederson wishes Mane well after recovering from horror tackle|
|Schauffele wins Tour Championship, Thomas claims FedEx Cup title|
|Axar returns for final two Australia ODIs|
|Guardiola balks at Chelsea or United fearing in-form Manchester City|
|Morata shining as Chelsea´s leading man after Juve, Madrid frustration|
|Black Caps omit Neesham and Broom for India ODI series|
|CAF Champions League Review: Etoile Sahel see off Al Ahli Tripoli to reach semi-finals|
|Moeen ´just had a slog´ in breathtaking century|
|Seahawks & Titans sit out national anthem|
|President Trump responds to anthem protests: Locked arms is good, kneeling is not acceptable|
|WATCH: Showboating costly as Bears´ Cooper is denied TD|
|Late Isa snatches Toulon win, Lyon up to third|
|Federer secures Laver Cup victory for Europe|
|Dzumhur sees off Fognini for history-making ATP triumph|
|Brighton winner was a foul, claims frustrated Benitez|
|Bjerregaard claims maiden European Tour title at Portugal Masters|
|Steelers skip anthem, players kneel as NFL shows solidarity amid Trump criticism|
|Brutal Moeen century sets up thumping England win|
|India wrap up series win over Australia and regain top spot in ODI rankings|
|Exeter Chiefs cruise to first place, Northampton Saints hammer London Irish|
|Spalletti: Unbeaten Inter must go beyond their limits|