New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum cut a dejected figure when discussing his side's innings and 27-run defeat to South Africa in Cape Town, and looked like he was undergoing surgery without anaesthetic when addressing their 45 all out.
The Kiwis found themselves dismissed for their third-lowest Test total ever, in under 20 overs on day one at Newlands. Vernon Philander took five of the wickets in six overs, and McCullum admitted that the memory of that drubbing would live long in his memory.
A haunted McCullum said after the conclusion of his first Test as permanent skipper: "We will never be rid of the memory of being bowled out for 45 in the first innings. that will stay with us forever.
"We're very disappointed to lose a test match inside three days and it hurt immensely but we came back and showed some resilience at times. We managed to absorb some of the pressure South Africa applied throughout the match but, ultimately, we leave Newlands with a test loss."
He added: "It's no surprise the current South African team is the No 1 team in the world their seam attack is right up there in terms of the best attacks.
"They bowled well exceptionally well with the new ball, especially in the first spell of the new ball in the second innings."
One bright light for the Kiwis was the maiden Test century of Dean Brownlie, who made 109 before being dismissed by Morne Morkel with the new ball just before lunch on day three. Brownlie batted with confidence, and looked far superior compared to his team-mates.
The skipper was eager to turn the spotlight onto a positive subject, saying: "Dean was brilliant. It was a high quality innings that, in the circumstances, was fantastic for him and hopefully will be the start of a very successful career for him.
"To come out against the No 1 team in the world in the situation we were in and play a reasonably counter-attacking innings, in trying circumstances, was a fabulous effort."
New Zealand will have a chance to level the two-match series when they face the Proteas in Port Elizabeth, the second Test starting on 11 January.