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2023 Rugby World Cup in France

Discussion in 'Other Sports Forum' started by Claymore95, Aug 27, 2023.

  1. Claymore95

    Claymore95 Working on it... Club Member

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    The 4 year wait is almost up, and we're 2 weeks away from the start of the 2023 Rugby (Union) World Cup in France.

    France kick it all off on Friday 8th September against the All Blacks.

    World Rugby made a big cockup in making the draw for the groups 3 years ahead of the tournament, with the current top 5 ranked teams in the world all ending up in one half of the draw (Ireland, New Zealand, South Africa, France and Scotland). They've admitted the mistake by saying they'll make the draw for the next tournament in 2027 closer to the tournament itself, but it's too late for this one and only 2 of the top 5 will make the semi-finals from that side of the draw.

    Even worse (from a Scotland perspective!) is we're in a group with Ireland (#1 currently) and South Africa (#3 and defending champions) and have a massive task to even get out of the group (top 2 qualify for the quarter-finals). Scotland on the other side of the draw would have been a good bet to make the semi finals.

    England, Wales, Australia and Argentina all should have much easier tasks on the other side of the draw, but 3 of them have not being playing great recently (Argentina maybe the exception) and there could be a shock or two advancing from the groups. England lost to Fiji yesterday in a warm-up game in England, the first time they've ever lost to them, and have been playing pretty badly recently (think it's 6 of last 7 games they've lost).

    If I had to pick a winner at stage, I'd say it would be South Africa, or maybe France as the hosts. You can never write NZ off, and Ireland have been the best team in the world for last couple of years but I don't trust them in the big tournament as they don't have a great WC record.
     
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  2. MikeHoncho

    MikeHoncho -=| Censored |=-

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    Where to watch?
     
  3. Claymore95

    Claymore95 Working on it... Club Member

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    NBC are the broadcaster in USA.
     
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  4. Da 'Fins

    Da 'Fins Season Ticket Holder Staff Member Club Member

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    Such a great event and such a screw up making the draw 3 years out? Who does that? They should have had the draw 3-4 months (not years) ahead of time. 6 months at the most. Smh.
     
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  5. Claymore95

    Claymore95 Working on it... Club Member

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    The first round of fixtures were completed last weekend, with a couple from the second round having taken place on Thurs/Fri this week too. One team sits out each round of fixtures, as there are 5 teams in each pool/group.

    Pool A
    France 27-13 New Zealand
    Italy 52-3 Namibia
    (2nd round of fixtures)
    France 27-12 Uruguay
    New Zealand 71-3 Namibia

    Pool B
    Ireland 82-8 Romania
    South Africa 18-3 Scotland

    Pool C
    Australia 35-15 Georgia
    Wales 32-26 Fiji

    Pool D
    England 27-10 Argentina
    Japan 42-12 Chile
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2023 at 8:10 AM
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  6. Claymore95

    Claymore95 Working on it... Club Member

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    There's been no big shock result in the games so far (and to be fair there often aren't many, if any, in the group stages). England might actually be the biggest shock, as Argentina were the favourites and England were reduced to 14 men after just 2 minutes when one of their players was sent off. Argentina were then hot favourites to win, but they played dreadfully, never taking advantage of the extra player.

    It was an awful game to watch, far too much kicking by both teams and no tries scored by England, with only 1 try scored by Argentina, and that was only a consolation score in the last few minutes.

    Game of the tournament so far was probably Wales-Fiji. Wales, although not expected to be very good in this WC, were leading 32-14 but a late Fiji charge brought them to within 6 points, and indeed they had a walk-in try opportunity with the last play of the game but one of their star players, Semi Radradra, dropped the ball when he only had to catch and run with it a few yards.

    Australia-Fiji looks like the most interesting game this weekend, in the pool/group that looks the hardest to call for who will finish 1st/2nd.
     
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  7. Claymore95

    Claymore95 Working on it... Club Member

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    Second round of fixtures now complete. It's clear that Romania and Namibia are the whipping boys of this WC. Uruguay and Portugal have looked decent and Chile played some good rugby but, I say this every WC, I wish World Rugby would find a way for the so-called lesser teams to play more regularly against the top nations. Playing top level rugby only once every 4 years isn't helping the smaller teams to close the gap on the sport's best. The only way they will improve and make the WC better is by getting them experience playing the best teams, even if it's only 1 or 2 games a year. Unfortunately, most of the top teams only want to play each other as that's where the money is.

    There's an annual World League expected to start from 2026, but even that is ring-fenced to 12 teams in the top league with no promotion/relegation for the first 4 years, so although a couple of teams (likely Japan & Fiji) will play the top teams more often, it's still the usual suspects playing each other. I suppose it's a start and smaller teams could get a chance from 2030...maybe.

    Pool A
    France 27-17 Uruguay
    New Zealand 71-3 Namibia

    Pool B
    Ireland 59-16 Tonga
    South Africa 76-0 Romania

    Pool C
    Wales 28-8 Portugal
    Australia 15-22 Fiji (it was the game of the round as expected)

    Pool D
    Samoa 43-10 Chile
    England 34-12 Japan
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2023 at 6:06 AM
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  8. Claymore95

    Claymore95 Working on it... Club Member

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    Ireland-South Africa is the clear game of the round this weekend, top 2 ranked teams in the world going at it. From a Scotland perspective, we probably need a SA win and then hope we can shock Ireland in our last pool game, only way we've got a chance of getting to the quarter-finals after losing our first game to SA.
     

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