The South African men's hockey side ended their Tokyo Olympics campaign with a 4-4 draw against Canada on Friday.
Having secured a stunning 4-3 win over Germany on Thursday, South Africa would have backed themselves to beat a Canadian side that had lost all of their first four matches in the tournament.
It looked they were on their way to doing just that when they held a 4-2 lead, but Canada clawed their way back into the contest to secure their first point in Pool B.
The result means that South Africa finish 5th in Pool B with four points - three losses, a win and a draw - from their five matches.
They will not qualify for the quarter-finals.
There was more misery on the waterpolo front, meanwhile, as the South African women were beaten 33-1 by the Netherlands.
The women's hockey team, meanwhile, lost 4-1 to Germany.