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Rugby World Cup Semi Finals lineup adjustments for England

Rugby World Cup Semi Finals lineup adjustments for England

The highly anticipated Rugby World Cup semi finals clash against South Africa will see Freddie Steward return to the England squad at full-back. So, taking place in Paris marks a rematch of the 2019 final, where the Springboks emerged victorious. Head coach Steve Borthwick is making a trio of crucial changes to the starting XV. Steward will be taking over the full-back position, displacing Marcus Smith.

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Then Joe Marler will replace Ellis Genge as the loosehead prop, and George Martin will step in for Ollie Chessum in the second row.

The alteration at full-back was necessitated by an incident involving Marcus Smith. Who was forced off for a head injury assessment but passed it. Nonetheless, Freddie Steward returns to bolster the team as they face the side that bested them in the Rugby World Cup final four years ago.

Notably, Marcus Smith is not even listed among the replacements for this crucial encounter. The bench options for the backs will include Danny Care, George Ford, and Ollie Lawrence.

On the other hand, England’s captain, Owen Farrell, experienced some vocal opposition . When his name was announced before the quarter-final victory against Fiji, he retained his role at fly-half. Then Farrell went on to earn the “man of the match” title in a hard-fought contest. Helping England maintain their unbeaten record in the Rugby World Cup. This was particularly satisfying after Fiji had defeated England in a pre-tournament.

So, Steve Borthwick is well aware that his team will need to summon their utmost resolve to challenge the reigning world champions. With the prospect of a final clash against either New Zealand or Argentina.

Nienaber’s Warning: Underestimate England at Your Peril

In the context of the Rugby World Cup Semi Finals. South Africa has decided to maintain their lineup, a rare occurrence in the tenure of head coach Jacques Nienaber and director of rugby Rassie Erasmus. Who has seen 64 Tests. They have shown unwavering faith in the squad that secured a nail-biting 29-28 victory over the hosts, France, in the quarter-finals.

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Notably, eight of the South African players in this unchanged lineup, including Siya Kolisi, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Duane Vermeulen, Bongi Mbonambi, Eben Etzebeth, Frans Malherbe, Damian de Allende, and Cheslin Kolbe, were part of the victorious 32-12 win over England in the previous Rugby World Cup final. The experience gained from that triumph is expected to be a valuable asset in their upcoming clash in Paris.

Jacques Nienaber acknowledges the formidable challenge posed by Steve Borthwick’s side, the only undefeated team left in the RWC tournament. England arrives at this encounter with five consecutive victories, riding a wave of confidence. They possess a high-quality pack and world-class backs capable of creating magic on the field, making them a force to be reckoned with. Dismissing their capabilities would be a significant error.

Both teams find themselves just one win away from securing a spot in the Rugby World Cup final. And history has shown that England tends to elevate their performance in these critical matches. The defeated side would be relegated to the third-place playoff if they lose this semi-final.

As Nienaber points out, the two teams are closely matched in terms of average player age and caps. Both are accustomed to performing on the grandest stage of rugby. With the coveted trophy within reach, the semi-final becomes a do-or-die situation. And neither side is willing to concede an inch in their quest for Rugby World Cup glory.

Owen Farrell’s Precision Leads England to Rugby World Cup Semi-Finals

Owen Farrell’s precise kicking steered England into the Rugby World Cup semi finals in a hard-fought encounter against Fiji in Marseille. England established a comfortable 14-point lead with just 15 minutes left on the clock. However, Fiji’s Peni Ravai and Vilimoni Botitu orchestrated a thrilling comeback, leveling the score at 24-24 in a frantic four-minute period. It was at this crucial juncture that Farrell. Who faced initial skepticism when chosen over George Ford as the starting fly-half, validated his selection with a clutch drop-goal, pushing England ahead 27-24.

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In the 78th minute, another Farrell penalty provided a bit more breathing space for England. The tension mounted when a deliberate knock-on by the fly-half awarded Fiji a penalty as the clock ticked into the red. Nevertheless, England managed to secure possession on the ground, clinching a memorable victory.

Following defeats for Ireland and Wales on Saturday, England stands as the lone remaining home nation in the tournament. Their next challenge is a showdown against defending champions South Africa in the semi-finals. Setting the stage for a repeat of the 2019 RWC final.

England entered the match as favorites. But the memory of a disappointing loss to Fiji in a series of RWC warm-up games in August. Along with inconsistent performances in the pool stage, had tempered expectations.

The English supporters significantly outnumbered Fijian fans in Marseille. And the trip proved worthwhile as their team delivered a spirited performance. The match began with the same vibrancy as Fiji’s striking orange kit, marked by fierce and bone-crunching tackles.

England’s momentum continued to build, as they maintained a high tempo. An advancing rolling maul made valuable progress before the ball was swiftly recycled. Thus allowing Manu Tuilagi to overpower his opponent and score England’s opening try in a display of sheer muscle and determination.

Steve Borthwick: Anticipation Grows for Rugby World Cup Semi Finals

Steve Borthwick, England’s head coach, expresses his anticipation for the Rugby World Cup semi-finals. By emphasizing the excitement surrounding the upcoming clash. “We’re eagerly looking forward to this. Our fans and players are buzzing with excitement. The atmosphere in Paris, ahead of this crucial RWC semi finals, is absolutely electric. Our supporters have been a constant source of inspiration throughout the tournament,” Borthwick says.

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Borthwick underscores the team’s primary focus on self-improvement and progress. “Our primary concern is our own development and growth as a team. We’ve witnessed significant progress week by week during this RWC tournament. Regardless of the challenges our players have faced in previous games, we’ve consistently found ways to emerge victorious.”

He also emphasizes the deep commitment of the players to representing. England, emphasizing the desire for a performance that brings pride to the nation. “We have a group of players who hold the honor of representing England very close to their hearts. It’s my mission to ensure they deliver a performance that we can all be proud of on Saturday night.”

Belief is a fundamental aspect of the team’s mentality, as Borthwick points out. “This team has a strong belief in its abilities, a conviction that has been evident since I rejoined. Emphasizing the importance of the breakdown, England strategically kicked for the corner after securing an early win on the ground. A swift and forceful offensive drive faced a relentless barrage of powerful Fijian tackles. Ultimately, Steve Borthwick’s squad won a penalty right in front of the posts, and Owen Farrell confidently slotted three points.

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The Rugby World Cup Semi Finals Showdown South Africa vs England

“In the 2019 Rugby World Cup final Where were you when England lost to South Africa?” asks Danny Care, the Harlequins scrum-half. Despite missing out on the selection for the tournament in Japan, Care has a unique perspective. He took his kids to a trampoline place in Guildford during the final match because he couldn’t bring himself to watch it. Was it the nerves of an England fan, or was it the pain of missing out on such an opportunity?

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Care responds, “Probably the latter.” He vividly recalls the awe-inspiring performance of the England team when they defeated New Zealand in the semi-finals, which intensified his desire to be a part of the Rugby World Cup final. However, when it came to the final match, he couldn’t bear to watch. It was the first time he truly grasped the significance of what he was missing – the chance to represent his country in a final, a realization that was difficult to accept.

Fast forward to the 2023 semi-finals in Paris, where Care is set to play a crucial role. The 36-year-old scrum-half has already participated in four of England’s five games in France. Including their thrilling quarter final victory against Fiji. Care’s perspective has shifted as he contemplates the upcoming RWC semi finals clash against South Africa. Saying, “We’re one of the four teams, and one of them will emerge as the champion. Why not us? Our approach has been methodical, and it has paid off. Our focus remains on this weekend, and we’ve emphasized throughout that you can’t look beyond this game, especially when facing the reigning champions.”

South Africa’s Determination to Defend Their Title

South Africa is on a quest for their fourth Rugby World Cup victory and aims to become only the second team. Following New Zealand in 2011 and 2015, to win back-to-back tournaments. Despite a setback in the pool stage against Ireland, the Springboks advanced to the semi-finals with a remarkable quarter-final triumph over France and are considered strong contenders to reach the final.

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We understand that to progress to the final, we’ll need to play one of the best games of our lives, possibly the finest in this tournament,” Care emphasized. “We hold immense respect for their team; their style of play is exceptional, and some of their players are phenomenal. They have the experience and know-how to win World Cups.”

“It’s an enormous test for our team, but the players are eager to be here and give it their all.” South Africa’s Director of Rugby, Rassie Erasmus, isn’t taking the upcoming match lightly and believes England is seeking redemption for their loss in the 2019 final.

“They have a lot of players who faced us last time in the World Cup final. So I expect them to come out strong, particularly in set pieces,” Erasmus noted. Fly-half Handre Pollard acknowledged England’s determination to overcome their past disappointment and emphasized their readiness for a tough, physical match.

“We anticipate they will raise their intensity and physicality to new levels,” Pollard said. “We’re prepared for that, and we thrive on the physical aspect of the game. If there’s going to be intensity, we welcome it.” This semi-final encounter promises to be a thrilling battle between two formidable teams

England Fans Find Joy in Rugby World Cup Quarter-Final Triumph

England brings back excitement to its rugby fans in Marseille by advancing to the Rugby World Cup semi finals. Over the past year, England’s male rugby supporters have encountered their share of disappointments, from a lackluster Six Nations performance to an RCW preparation marked by uncertainty. The tournament’s pool stage presented more questions than answers. However, in the thrilling atmosphere of Marseille, joy returned on Sunday following a nerve-wracking World Cup quarter finals match.

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England’s exhilarating performance culminated in Owen Farrell’s late drop-goal and penalty, securing a promising victory against Fiji. And rekindling the same pure joy felt when England triumphed in the semi-finals against New Zealand during the 2019 World Cup.

The elation may have been tempered by the realization that their next opponent would be South Africa. Following the Springboks’ impressive victory against France later on Sunday. However, England’s strong start, featuring formidable defense, dynamic attacks, and high-intensity play, provided hope and optimism, marking an improvement over their past year’s performance.

Despite Fiji’s late surge, which featured “a couple of thunderbolts” according to England’s head coach Steve Borthwick, resulting in two quick tries to level the score. England showcased resilience and determination, ultimately securing a hard-fought victory. “Finding a way to win” has turned into a rallying cry for Borthwick and his team. Captain Farrell emphasized it multiple times in his post-match press conference.

Borthwick noted, “Not too long ago, the England team might not have managed to come back and win that game. But this team did. There’s a shrewdness within the team, a calmness led by Farrell.”

However, the jubilation for fans stemmed from more than just the thrilling conclusion. It might have felt even more gratifying after the challenging year they endured since Eddie Jones was unexpectedly replaced, and Borthwick took over in late 2022.

Paul Grayson’s Insights: England’s Path to Success

England’s ‘Free Shot’ at Rugby World Cup Final – Insights from Paul Grayson” As the only semi-finalists with a perfect five-win record in this World Cup. England is ready to face their upcoming challenge with confidence. Former fly-half Paul Grayson believes that England has made significant progress in France and embraces the role of underdogs.

Grayson expressed his perspective, emphasizing the team’s dedication and hard work. He highlighted their flawless record in the tournament, demonstrating their remarkable journey. The do-or-die encounter against Fiji pushed England’s resilience to the limit. Despite facing adversity, the team displayed experience and determination, resulting in a pivotal victory.

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Grayson acknowledged that England isn’t solely focused on winning fans’ favor. Instead, they are driven by the potential impact of winning the World Cup, a feat that would reverberate significantly. As they prepare for the semi-finals, England is fully aware of the challenges ahead. In the eyes of many, they are considered underdogs, which can serve as a powerful motivator for the team. In the realm of sports, such situations often ignite the strongest determination and resolve, making it a valuable source of motivation.

The weekend didn’t yield many wins for the home nations, and England fans witnessed the misfortunes of their close neighbors. Wales couldn’t recover from the late tries that stunned them against Argentina, and Ireland’s aspirations were dashed by New Zealand.

Even though they may be benefiting from an imbalanced draw, England is one of the last four standings. Their forwards made significant inroads in attack, with Ben Earl, in particular, electrifying the crowd with a late break.

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In the Rugby World Cup Semi Finals: Team of the Week with Standout Players

In the Rugby World Cup, the count of missed tackles might appear high. But when you consider that many of the players charging forward were primarily focused on closing down space. It doesn’t truly reflect their impressive defensive performance. Maintaining composure, England found themselves in a situation where they had to win their game against Fiji twice. Despite initially building a seemingly comfortable 14-point lead, Steve Borthwick might be concerned by Fiji’s swift response, leveling the game with a couple of quick tries just ten minutes before the final whistle.

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However, what was encouraging was England’s response to this setback. With the momentum swinging in Fiji’s favor, England’s pack showed resilience, gaining ground and allowing captain Owen Farrell to coolly slot a drop goal. A few minutes later, they secured a crucial penalty, extending their lead to six points, which ultimately sealed the game.

As they prepare to face the formidable South Africa, England knows they need to maintain concentration throughout the full 80 minutes. Yet, having faced such pressure and responded effectively, this experience will undoubtedly prove invaluable.

Following a series of outstanding Rugby World Cup quarter finals that witnessed the advancement of Argentina, New Zealand, England, and South Africa to the final four, we’ve compiled our Team of the Week. Ireland’s Hugo Keenan, despite their loss, delivered another fantastic performance, showing his remarkable skills on the field.

This selection features strong representation from the four teams that progressed, although some players from the losing sides also earned their spots through exceptional individual efforts.

Key Players in the Rugby World Cup Semi Final Matches

Beauden Barrett (New Zealand): He was often subjected to scrutiny during this Rugby World Cup Semifinals cycle. But proved his worth in the recent match. The most experienced of the Barretts excelled in the backfield, managing this area with expertise. He frequently joined the attacking line and showcased his skill with well-placed kicks over the defensive line. His remarkable speed and athleticism, combined with his rugby intelligence.

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Emiliano Boffelli (Argentina): The winger found his kicking form after an early miss, ultimately contributing 16 points. Including a remarkable long-range penalty. In open play, his exceptional aerial skills were a highlight, making this a memorable and crucial performance for Argentina in RWC. Jesse Kriel (South Africa): Kriel’s Test performances have been consistently improving, and this was undoubtedly his best yet. His defensive presence was felt all over the field, where he consistently put his body on the line. His perfectly executed grubber kick to set up Cheslin Kolbe exemplified his outstanding weekend. England’s Joe Marchant also deserves recognition for his strong outing against Fiji.

Bundee Aki (Ireland): Aki has arguably been the standout player of the Rugby World Cup Semi Finals tournament thus far, and he reaffirmed his excellence with another stellar performance, including a try against his country of birth. His carrying ability sets him apart, but even his remarkable efforts couldn’t keep Ireland in the competition. He gets the nod over All Blacks hero Jordie Barrett.

Cheslin Kolbe (South Africa): Kolbe delivered one of his finest performances in the green and gold jersey. His determination was evident when he charged down a conversion attempt, a crucial play in the Rugby World Cup Finals match. Kolbe also scored a try, showcasing his dynamic playmaking abilities whenever he had possession. This was a monumental performance from a star player.

Quarter Finals Curse Strikes Again: Ireland vs. New Zealand Showdown

After an exciting weekend of the Rugby World Cup quarter finals. We delve into five noteworthy trends. Two Cents Rugby takes a closer look. Quarter Final Curse Revisited The clash between Ireland and New Zealand was always anticipated as a nail-biter. Ireland, the world’s top-ranked team on a remarkable 17-game winning streak, found themselves once again exiting the tournament at the quarter-finals stage.

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New Zealand entered the Rugby World Cup Semi Finals as slight underdogs but showcased excellence in crucial aspects of the game. Their dominance in the breakdown and lineout set them apart, exposing vulnerabilities in the Irish lineout. New Zealand’s lineout performance was pristine, going eight for eight in their throws. All Blacks also excelled at the ruck, securing turnovers through players.

The end of this incredible Irish run might not bring much joy to fans, although some may relish it. While Irish supporters might take solace in the fact that this match could easily have been a final in its own right.

As is typical after an RWC, Ireland will experience a changing of the guard. Senior players like Johnny Sexton are likely to step aside for the upcoming generation. Fans from all nations will be hoping for a more balanced draw in 2027, avoiding scenarios where the top four teams all land on one side of the tournament.

Impactful Pumas Bench Argentina staged an impressive comeback against Wales after being 10 points behind. A crucial factor in the Pumas’ resurgence was the impact of their experienced substitutes, who scored both of their tries.

Joel Sclavi, the imposing prop, entered the fray in the 67th minute and burrowed over the try line just a minute later. Then, veteran Nicolas Sanchez intercepted a pass from the Welsh youngster Sam Costelow, against Argentina.

2023 Rugby World Cup Quarter-Finals Recap: Pumas and All Blacks Shine

In the intense Rugby World Cup quarter finals, several notable trends emerged that shaped the thrilling weekend’s action. Let’s see the aspects:

Pumas’ Bench Impact: Argentina displayed resilience by staging a comeback from a 10-point deficit against Wales in their quarter-final clash. A significant part of the Pumas’ resurgence was attributed to their experienced bench, with substitutes contributing significantly. Joel Sclavi, a robust prop, made a pivotal impact just minutes after entering the field. Veteran Nicolas Sanchez sealed the victory with an intercept against Welsh youngster Sam Costelow.

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 RWC Quarter Final Curse Strikes Again: The highly anticipated match between Ireland and New Zealand witnessed the Rugby World Cup quarter final curse striking once more. Despite Ireland’s status as the number one team globally and an impressive 17-game winning streak, they were eliminated at this stage. All Blacks’ Key Areas: The game-winning moment arrived after an astounding 37 phases of defense, with Sam Whitelock making the call.

Irish rugby is poised for a transition as senior players like Johnny Sexton make way for the new generation. Fans hope for more balanced draws in future World Cups to avoid top teams clashing early in the tournament. South Africa secured a victory over the formidable French side on their home turf, South Africa needed an exceptional performance.

Seven South African players achieved double-figure tackle counts, including Jesse Kriel and Damian de Allende in the backs and several forwards, such as Frans Malherbe and Pieter-Steph du Toit. As the Rugby World Cup Semi Finals approach, the impact of bench players. The key strengths in different facets of the game.

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South Africa Ends France’s Rugby World Cup Dream, Setting Up Semi Final with England

The quarter final weekend of the Rugby World Cup proved to be a spectacle. The last match of the round delivered an extraordinary contest filled with fluctuating fortunes. In the end, it was a heartbreak for the French players who had aspired to win the tournament on home soil. But were left sprawled across the field in a mix of despair and exhaustion.

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This outcome serves as another reminder of the southern hemisphere’s dominance in international rugby. South Africa, armed with their wealth of RWC experience, secured a place in the Rugby World Cup semifinals. They are set to face England, the sole Northern Hemisphere team remaining in the competition. Even the most passionate English fan wouldn’t argue that their team represents the best the North has to offer.

The Rugby World Cup quarter finals this weekend showcased the four best teams in the world, albeit in head-to-head battles. The Ireland-New Zealand clash on Saturday would have been a fitting final for any RWC, and the match between France and South Africa was no exception.

It was a remarkable game, featuring the dazzling French, known for their free-flowing style, pitted against the formidable Springboks. Who brought their renowned physicality and strength to the encounter. Right from the outset, the match was played at a pace and intensity unmatched by any of the other RWC quarter final games. And it was France who initially dictated this tempo.

However, the Springboks, despite selecting a team to run. Employed their signature strengths repeatedly to thwart their hosts.

France Dominates in Style-But Springboks Secure Victory in Rugby World Cup Quarterfinals

In terms of artistic merit, France took home all the points, if they had been up for grabs. However, similar to the All Blacks in the previous night’s Rugby World Cup match. It was the Springboks who understood the most direct path to victory. By the end of the game, France’s relentless pursuit of a running game had unraveled. But they persevered until the clock ran out.

The game began at a blistering pace, driven by confidence and hope. Especially when France opened the scoring just four minutes into the match. Cyril Baille was sent over in the corner following an attacking lineout. Setting the stage for a thrilling first half filled with dramatic twists.

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While France dictated the tempo with the ball in hand. The Springboks tested them with high kicks, identifying a potential vulnerability. This tactic quickly paid off with two tries in 10 minutes. Cobus Reinach launched an up-and-under kick amid the chaos of its landing. Kurt-Lee Arendse reacted swiftly to secure a clear path to the try line.

The next high kick, courtesy of Manie Libbok, was another test that Cameron Woki failed to field cleanly. Damian De Allende seized the opportunity, and when he was brought down just short. He was quick to his feet to receive Reinach’s pass from a ruck, scoring South Africa’s second try.

The rugby on display was relentless and captivating. France fought back and equalized four minutes later, with Antoine Dupont tapping a penalty to set up Peato Mauvaka’s try. Although Cheslin Kolbe pulled off a magnificent charge down of Thomas Ramos’s conversion attempt.

Despite having the run of play for much of the first half-hour, doubts may have crept into the minds of the French players, as they found themselves seven points adrift.

The 2023 Rugby World Cup Semi-Finals: Final Four Confirmed

The 2023 Rugby World Cup semi finals have now been officially determined, featuring Argentina, New Zealand, England, and South Africa as the final four contenders. Both of these highly anticipated matches are scheduled to take place at the Stade de France stadium in Saint-Denis. The first RWC Semi Final will showcase Argentina going head to head with New Zealand, while the second will witness England taking on the Springboks.

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Argentina secured their place in the Rugby World Cup Semi Finals after finishing second in Pool D during the tournament’s earlier stages. This achievement granted them a RWC quarter final showdown against Wales. Although Michael Cheika’s team found themselves trailing 10-0 in the opening moments of the quarter final, they fought back valiantly and ultimately emerged as 29-17 victors, effectively eliminating Warren Gatland’s squad from the competition.

On the same day, the All Blacks brought an end to Ireland’s impressive 17-game winning streak in an exhilarating encounter. Ian Foster’s team, which secured the second position in Pool A behind hosts France, initially raced to a 13-0 lead within the first 20 minutes. However, Ireland staged a remarkable comeback, narrowing the gap to just one point at half-time. A second-half try from Will Jordan extended the All Blacks’ lead to 25-17 before the hour mark. And despite conceding a penalty try and two yellow cards, New Zealand managed to hold on to victory, thanks in part to Jordie Barrett’s crucial penalty and some resilient defense.

When France knocked on just outside the 22 after their latest attack, South Africa seized the opportunity. They initiated a breakout from the scrum, dismantling France’s midfield and then launching a deep kick. Dupont was caught by De Allende, prompting South Africa to opt for a quick tap from the penalty.

South Africa Stuns France in Thrilling Quarter Final Clash

In a thrilling Rugby World Cup quarter final clash, South Africa pulled off a stunning 29-28 victory to end France’s hopes of winning the World Cup on home soil. Despite being behind 22-19 at halftime, the defending champions produced a remarkable back-and-forth Test match. Eben Eztebeth played a pivotal role in securing a try that gave his team the lead, with Handre Pollard contributing a crucial conversion and penalty. Thomas Ramos managed to secure a penalty for France, but the Springboks managed to hold on for a hard-fought victory.

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South Africa is now set to face England in a rematch of the 2019 Rugby World Cup final. The winner of this showdown will advance to the final and take on the victor of the Argentina versus New Zealand match.

Meanwhile, England maintained their undefeated status in the tournament. Having topped Pool D by defeating Argentina, Japan, Chile, and Samoa on their path to the quarter finals, where they squared off against Fiji. Owen Farrell delivered a standout performance, contributing 20 points and playing a pivotal role in both of England’s tries. Despite facing a strong challenge from Fiji, England secured a hard-fought 30-24 victory. Steve Borthwick’s team enjoyed a 21-10 lead at half-time, but the Pacific Islanders made a spirited comeback in the second half.

The second half continued similarly, but now the French attacks grew less incisive with each passing minute, every breath draining their energy. In contrast, South Africa began to tighten the screws during the last quarter.

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Rugby World Cup Quarter Finals- Clash of Hemispheres

The 2023 Rugby World Cup quarter finals present intriguing clashes between teams from the northern and southern hemispheres, adding to the excitement of the tournament. Warren Gatland’s team has an opportunity to secure a spot in the Semi Finals for the second consecutive tournament. The winner of this quarter final will face either Ireland or the All Blacks in the final four. Wales commenced their campaign by fending off a late resurgence from Fiji, prevailing 32-26, although they had led 32-14 with seven minutes to go. They continued their journey with a victory over Portugal, triumphing 28-8.

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Marking their most significant victory over the Wallabies. A 43-19 win against Georgia secured their top spot in Pool C. Argentina, on the other hand, only secured their quarter final berth after their final Pool D victory over Japan. Initially, Michael Cheika’s team suffered a disappointing 27-10 defeat to England. They managed a narrow 19-10 victory against Samoa in Saint-Etienne and went on to comfortably defeat Chile 59-5. Their thrilling encounter with Japan ultimately determined the second spot.

World rankings: Wales 7th, Argentina 9th.

Why Wales might win: Gatland’s style of play is well-suited for knockout rugby.

Why Argentina might win: Seizing control of the forward battle and converting their goal kicks will be crucial. The absence of Taulupe Faletau and Gareth Anscombe was felt by Wales.

Overall head-to-head – Played 21 matches, with Wales winning 14, Argentina winning 6, and 1 draw. Last meeting – Wales 20-13, Cardiff, November 12, 2022. At the Rugby World Cup: In the 1991 pool, Wales defeated Argentina 16-7, and in the 1999 pool, Wales won 23-1.

A Much-Anticipated RWC Rematch- Ireland vs. New Zealand

Ireland vs. New Zealand Sunday at 8 am in Saint-Denis. A rematch is on the horizon. Four years ago, the All Blacks dominated Ireland at the same stage. Since then, these two teams have crossed paths four times, with Ireland emerging victorious in three encounters, including their first series win on New Zealand soil last year. Ireland topped Group B, commencing their campaign with a resounding 82-8 triumph over Romania and another commanding victory against Tonga. They further solidified their standing with a thrilling 13-8 win over the Springboks. Their group play ended emphatically with a superb 36-14 victory over Scotland, underscoring their current form.

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The All Blacks, on the other hand, have regained their footing after an opening-night setback, where they succumbed 27-13 to France. Subsequently, Ian Foster’s side has cruised through their matches, encountering little resistance. They obliterated Namibia 71-3 and trounced Italy 96-17, culminating their pool play with a dominant 73-0 win against Uruguay. The All Blacks registered an impressive 38 tries in pool play, the highest among all teams, surpassing Ireland by 11 tries. Nonetheless, their upcoming challenge in Paris promises to be considerably more demanding.

World rankings: Ireland 1st, New Zealand 4th

Why Ireland may triumph: With 17 consecutive wins, they operate as a highly efficient unit, poised to overcome any quarter final obstacles.

Why the All Blacks could prevail: If they recapture the form that enabled them to overpower the Springboks and Wallabies earlier this year.

Head-to-head statistics: Overall – In 36 matches, the All Blacks have claimed victory 30 times, Ireland 5 times, and a solitary draw. Last meeting – Ireland secured a 32-22 victory in Wellington on July 16, 2022. At the Rugby World Cup – In the 1995 pool, the All Blacks prevailed 43-19, while in the 2019 quarter final, they won 46-19.

England vs. Fiji- A Thrilling Rugby World Cup Quarter Finals Showdown

In August, Fiji achieved a historic victory over England at Twickenham, marking their maiden win against the 2003 World Cup champions. England embarked on their World Cup campaign with a solid 27-10 triumph over Argentina, followed by a convincing 34-12 win against Japan, positioning themselves at the top of Pool D. They continued their winning streak with a dominant 71-0 victory over Chile but faced a challenging test against Samoa, ultimately securing an 18-17 comeback victory.

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Fiji’s World Cup journey began with a loss to Wales, but they quickly rebounded with an impressive 22-15 win over Australia. However, their momentum seemed to wane afterward, as they narrowly defeated Georgia 17-12 before suffering a late loss to Portugal.

The victor of this match will advance to the semifinals. Where they will contend with either France or South Africa. Why England Will Win: England’s extensive experience in high-pressure matches will be their driving force.

To put it in context, since the Rugby World Cup’s inception in 1987, only one northern hemisphere team, England, has managed to clinch the title. That victory came in a nail-biting final 20 years ago in Sydney, sealed by Johnny Wilkinson’s famous drop-goal. However, there’s more than just on-field competition at play; there’s a significant strategic element off the field. It appears they are eagerly hoping for a rare northern hemisphere triumph for reasons we’ll delve into in the weeks to come.

Why Fiji Will Win: If Fiji maintains their composure and recaptures the form they displayed against Australia, they have a strong chance of victory. World Rankings: England – 6th, Fiji – 8th.

Head-to-Head Stats: Overall – 8 Matches Played, England Won 7, Fiji Won 1. Last Meeting – Fiji 30-22, Twickenham, August 27, 2023. At the World Cup – 1999 Quarter Final Playoff: England 45-24, 2015 Pool: England 35-11.

France vs. South Africa- A Thrilling Quarter Final Showdown

In a thrilling matchup on Monday at Saint-Denis, France will face off against South Africa in The Rugby World Cup Quarter Finals. The hosts kicked off their campaign with an impressive 27-13 victory over the All Blacks and followed it with a somewhat unconvincing performance against Uruguay, securing a 27-12 win. Their dominant wins against Namibia and Italy allowed them to top Group A. Entering the quarter finals in stellar form. While they have looked like the best team in the tournament so far, they are up against the three-time champions who are well-versed in the art of winning knockout games.

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South Africa’s journey to the quarter finals featured an 18-3 victory over Scotland and a massive 70-0 win against Romania. However, missed opportunities in the form of unsuccessful kicks at goal proved costly in their 13-8 defeat to Ireland. The defending champions concluded their pool play with a convincing 49-18 win over Tonga. Notably, the Springboks haven’t seen action since October 2. France managed to secure a victory in their last encounter in Marseille last year, but prior to that, the Boks had claimed victory in seven consecutive matches, dating back to 2010.

Why France Will Secure Victory: France is fueled by the support of their home crowd and the return of Dupont, one of the world’s best players.

Why South Africa Will Prevail: They bring experience off the bench and a wealth of knowledge in winning high-stakes knockout games. World Rankings Battle: France sits at 2nd place, while South Africa holds 3rd place.

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Rugby World Cup Quarter Finals: Eagerly Anticipated France vs South Africa

France and South Africa, are two rugby powerhouses. Therefore Set to clash in the Rugby World Cup quarter finals. Creating an exciting showdown between favorites and reigning champions. What makes this match even more thrilling is the return of the world’s best player. Antoine Dupont has resumed full-contact training despite recently undergoing surgery to repair a fractured cheekbone.

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France demonstrated their strength by emerging victorious in Pool A which included the formidable New Zealand. They secured four wins in as many matches. By claiming the top spot and the right to face the second-placed team from Pool B, South Africa. The Springboks suffered their sole defeat in the group stage against Ireland. Are sure to put up a fierce fight.

The France vs South Africa clash is scheduled for Sunday, October 15. Therefore game will kick off at 8 pm or 9 pm local time. But it will be held at the iconic Stade de France in Saint-Denis. Which boasts a capacity of 80,023 spectators. This stadium, initially built for the 1998 FIFA World Cup, has been France’s national stadium and the home of its rugby team since. It has witnessed some historic rugby moments, including France’s victory over England in 1998.

The match will be officiated by Ben O’Keeffe In addition, A New Zealand referee is handling his first Rugby World Cup quarter final. He will be assisted by fellow New Zealander Paul Williams. And James Doleman as assistant referee. France’s captain, Antoine Dupont, is actively preparing to play a crucial role in Sunday’s encounter. With South Africa after his return to training this week.

Excitement Builds for the Rugby World Cup Quarter Finals

The reigning world player of the year. Antoine Dupont has been out of action for the last three weeks due to a fractured cheekbone resulting from a head-on-head tackle by Namibia’s captain. Johan Deysel, during France’s third pool match in Marseille on September 21. So, it’s undergoing surgery to address the injury, Dupont received medical clearance on Monday. Setting the stage for his potential return to full training and participation in the highly anticipated Stade de France showdown against the world champions. South Africa, is in the Rugby World Cup this Sunday.

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William Servat, the forwards’ coach, provided an encouraging update. Dupont’s progress during a media briefing at Roland Garros on Wednesday. Servat shared, “We’ve been talking for two weeks now; Antoine is doing very well. So, he needed to recuperate. He’s been involved in the team’s strategic choices. And the changes we’re making to the game. Today, he was even more involved. He’s back with us and he’s very active in training.”

On the other hand, France’s head coach, Fabien Galthie, is expected to reveal the matchday. Squad to face the Springboks on Friday morning. The decision will be made in consultation with the influential scrum-half. Who will have a say in whether he feels prepared to make himself available for this high-stakes encounter?

This pivotal development adds an extra layer of excitement and anticipation to the upcoming Rugby World Cup quarter finals. Fans eagerly await the return of the world player of the year.

France’s captain, Antoine Dupont, is actively preparing to play a crucial role in Sunday’s encounter with South Africa after his return to training this week. France’s RWC journey ended at the semi-final stage. Where they faced England. However, New Zealand’s unexpected defeat provided valuable lessons, ultimately propelling them to claim the 2011 World Cup.

Rugby World Cup: Classic Quarter-Final Showdowns

The Rugby World Cup has seen its fair share of remarkable quarter finals throughout its history. With upsets, nail-biting drama, and lopsided victories it etched unforgettable moments into the tournament’s lore. The 2023 RWC promises to deliver another set of thrilling quarter final clashes. With the world’s top four ranked teams squaring off in two heavyweight encounters. Ireland against New Zealand and France against South Africa. To whet your appetite, let’s take a trip down memory lane and revisit some of the most memorable quarter finals from past Rugby World Cups.

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Ireland has long been a competitive team on the international stage. But their RWC journey has been marked by a recurring roadblock: the quarter finals. In the 1991 WC, they faced a thrilling encounter with the Wallabies at Lansdowne Road in Dublin. Despite not being favored to win. Ireland gave Australia a run for their money. Star Australian winger David Campese, who had shone throughout the tournament, scored two tries. But Gordon Hamilton’s late try put Ireland ahead. In a dramatic twist of fate, Michael Lynagh’s late score secured a one-point victory for Australia. A pivotal moment on their path to their first World Cup title.

In another memorable quarter final clash, defending champions Australia met England in Cape Town. The match was characterized by the exceptional kicking skills of Rob Andrew and Michael Lynagh. who each kicked five penalties. The game hung in the balance until the final minute when Rob Andrew’s drop goal broke Australia’s grip on the trophy. While England’s WC hopes ended in the semi-finals with a loss to New Zealand. This quarter final clash will always be remembered as a thriller. These Rugby World Cup quarter finals have delivered iconic moments, showcasing the tournament’s rich history and intense battles.

Quarter Final Thrills in RWC History

Jannie de Beer’s historic feat saw him converting five drop-goals from varying distances and angles. Propelling South Africa to a memorable victory over England at Stade de France. However, their quest for back-to-back titles was thwarted when they suffered an extra-time loss to Australia in the Rugby World Cup semi final.

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In the 2007 World Cup, the tournament hosts, France. Had a challenging journey after being stunned by Argentina in their opening match. Therefore Their path to glory included a quarter final clash with a formidable All Blacks team. So, France’s hopes were kept alive by a contentious winning score courtesy of Yannick Jauzion. A crucial offload by Damien Traille to Frederic Michalak and deemed to have traveled backward. Created the opportunity for Jauzion to break through for the winning try.

Australia, fresh from eliminating England from their home RWC, entered the quarter finals as clear favorites against Scotland. The match delivered a seesaw battle, with Scotland’s Mark Bennett seemingly securing victory through a late interception try. However, the game’s final moments defined by controversy, as referee Craig Joubert awarded a last-minute penalty to Australia for a deliberate offside by Scotland.

Although Australia progressed to the 2015 Rugby World Cup final. They encountered a formidable New Zealand side that put on a commanding performance in the quarter finals, held in Cardiff. Winger Nehe Milner-Skudder dazzled with his agility. Executing a brilliant right-foot step to score a try that became one of the tournament’s highlights. Julian Savea contributed to New Zealand’s dominance with a remarkable hat-trick of tries.

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Rugby World Cup Quarter Finals: Dan Biggar’s Recovery

The Rugby World Cup quarter finals are scheduled for Saturday. Wales assistant coach Jonathan Thomas has confirmed that fly-half Dan Biggar has successfully recovered from a pectoral muscle strain in time to face Argentina. Additionally, there is positive news regarding the recoveries of Gareth Anscombe and Liam Williams.

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Dan Biggar, who had to leave the field after only 12 minutes in Wales’ convincing 40-6 victory over Australia, sustained a pectoral muscle strain. Following an impressive unbeaten run through RWC Pool C. Biggar was an unused replacement for the Georgia game last weekend. He was brought in as a substitute on short notice when Sam Costelow had to start in place of the injured Gareth Anscombe.

When asked about Dan Biggar’s fitness for the upcoming match against Argentina in Marseille. Wales assistant coach Jonathan Thomas confirmed his readiness.

Moreover, there is encouraging news concerning Gareth Anscombe and full-back Liam Williams. Anscombe was withdrawn from the Georgia match just 45 minutes before kick-off due to a groin problem. While Liam Williams had to use crutches after sustaining a knee injury. These injury concerns came on the heels of No. 8 Taulupe Faletau’s unfortunate arm fracture, which ruled him out for the remainder of the rugby World Cup tournament.

Jonathan Thomas stated that the current outlook for Anscombe and Williams is positive. With their conditions not being as severe as initially feared. Liam Williams was seen jogging with the medics. And both Anscombe and Williams were observed jogging on the pitch during training. Signifying positive progress. The first 48 hours after an injury are crucial for assessing the situation.

Dan Biggar’s Timely Recovery for Rugby World Cup Quarter Final

Jonathan Thomas, the assistant coach of Wales, provided an update on the recovery of key players ahead of their Rugby World Cup Quarter Final clash against Argentina. Fly-half Dan Biggar, who suffered a pectoral muscle strain, is fit to face the Pumas. Gareth Anscombe and Liam Williams, who had injury concerns, are showing positive signs of recovery.

However, Thomas emphasized that their availability is an ongoing process. And daily progress will determine their participation in the upcoming match. Head coach Warren Gatland is set to announce the starting lineup. Aaron Wainwright is expected to replace the injured Taulupe Faletau.

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The cloud of Faletau’s injury lingers over Wales’ recent victory against Georgia, as the team has built strong relationships over time. Functioning like a close-knit family. Dealing with such departures is part of the harsh reality of sports.

Wales will face Argentina in the Rugby World Cup Quarter Finals, marking their first encounter in this stage since 1999. Wales enters the match as the favorites, having accumulated 19 out of 20 possible points in their group. In contrast, Argentina had a less convincing run, losing to 14-man England and facing challenges against Samoa before securing qualification by defeating Japan.

The collective goal for Wales has always been to reach the knockout stage, but they are not content with merely reaching the RWC quarter finals. They understand that at this stage, any team can upset the balance, as there are quality teams and players among the final eight.

The availability of key players, their collective spirit, and their determination to progress in the tournament will be pivotal factors in their pursuit of success in the Rugby World Cup Quarter Finals.

Wales’ Strong Position in RWC Quarter-Finals

Wales is entering the Rugby World Cup Quarter Finals in a strong position after an impressive clean sweep in Pool C, securing victories in all four of their matches. Although the saying goes, “never change a winning side,” the team is facing the challenge of adapting to the absence of No. 8 Taulupe Faletau, who has been ruled out of the tournament due to a broken arm. Additionally, there are other injury concerns that demand the attention of Warren Gatland, the head coach.

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Starting with the backline, the situation is relatively straightforward. If Liam Williams is fit to play, he will undoubtedly take his position in the starting lineup. In the unfortunate event that Williams is unavailable, Leigh Halfpenny will likely step in as his replacement. While Rio Dyer has contributed commendably when called upon, for the clash against Argentina, it is expected that Louis Rees-Zammit and Josh Adams will secure their spots on the wing. The partnership of Nick Tompkins and George North in the midfield seems almost certain, providing a stable foundation.

Turning to the half-back positions, if we consider that everyone is in contention. As Wales has indicated, there could be a competitive battle for the fly-half role between Gareth Anscombe and Dan Biggar. However, given the nature of Anscombe’s recent injury, it appears that Dan Biggar is in a more favorable condition to start in this crucial fixture.

In the forward pack, the front row consisting of Gareth Thomas, Ryan Elias, and Tomas Francis, which notably started against Fiji and Australia, is expected to retain the trust of the coaching staff, despite Dewi Lake’s commendable performance against Georgia. As Wales heads into this vital quarter-final clash against Argentina, these selection decisions will play a pivotal role in determining their path forward in the Rugby World Cup.

Gatland’s Game Plan for the Rugby World Cup Quarter-Finals

Gatland values the energy and consistency brought by Dee. But Lake’s performance may sway the decision. Corey Domachowski is known for his physical presence and Gatland’s faith in him. Could also return to the bench. In the pecking order, Henry Thomas may have moved ahead of Dillon Lewis. For the lock option among replacements, Dafydd Jenkins is the likely choice. Taine Basham, with his ability to make an impact off the bench.

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In the backline, Tomos Williams is set to retain the scrum-half role. Despite Kieran Hardy’s recent call-up. The selection for the fly-half position largely hinges on Gareth Anscombe’s fitness. If fit, Anscombe is the expected choice over Sam Costelow. Lastly, for the final spot, it’s anticipated that Gatland will opt for Dragons wing Rio Dyer. Even though Mason Grady filled the outside back cover role in Nantes.

Will Rowlands continues to be a prominent figure in the squad. Adam Beard, despite his recent absence to welcome a new child. Is likely to make a return. Dafydd Jenkins. Who delivered an impressive performance in Nantes. And he has also strengthened his case for consideration.

The absence of Taulupe Faletau necessitates a reevaluation of the back-row composition. Aaron Wainwright is expected to step into the No. 8 position in RWC. The real question revolves around who will fill the No. 6 jersey. Natural choices include Dan Lydiate and Christ Tshiunza. However, given Jac Morgan’s versatility, even though he’s primarily seen as a seven, it’s probable that he will switch to accommodate Tommy Reffell.

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Fiji Secures Rugby World Cup Quarter Finals Spot Despite Loss to Portugal

In a historic turn of events, Portugal secured their first-ever Rugby World Cup victory, earning a spot in the quarter-finals for Fiji. Where they are set to face England. This loss also marked the end of Eddie Jones’s Australia’s journey in the tournament. However, this match offered far more than what meets the eye. The final game of the pool stage proved to be the most thrilling, with Rodrigo Marta’s late try and Samuel Marques’s cool-headed conversion delivering a dramatic victory for Portugal.

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Throughout the tournament, Os Lobos, as the Portuguese team is known, captured the hearts and minds of fans. Their jubilant players singing in front of ecstatic supporters after the final whistle is an enduring memory of the competition. Equally impressive was hooker Mike Tadjer’s skillful touch-finder in the first half, executed flawlessly under immense pressure.

Fiji, on the other hand, appeared poised to secure a hard-fought victory for the second consecutive week until Marta’s game-changing moment. Their entry into the Rugby World Cup quarter-finals, the first time in 16 years and only the third in their history. It was secured thanks to a losing bonus point. This also dashed any faint hopes the Wallabies had of making it to the last eight.

Fiji now looks ahead to their RWC quarter-final clash with England in Marseille. While they can draw confidence from their victory at Twickenham in August, significant improvements will be necessary to face Steve Borthwick’s formidable side.

Fiji’s head coach, Simon Raiwalui, acknowledged their satisfaction at reaching this stage but emphasized the hard work that lies ahead in preparation for the quarter-finals.

Portugal’s Daring Display Earns Admiration in Rugby World Cup

Portugal, on the other hand, has displayed remarkable ambition and occasional abandon throughout this tournament, earning admiration from many. The openside flanker, Nicolas Martins, delivered an unwavering performance. While Marques exhibited strong leadership from the scrum-half position. It’s highly likely that many clubs will be vying for the signatures of these standout players after this impressive showing. Martins expressed his joy, saying, “It’s historic. I’m so happy. It’s the best moment of my life.”

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Twice during the second half, Portugal held a seven-point lead. Just one more would have sent Australia to the Rugby World Cup quarter-finals. However, Fiji’s relentless pressure finally paid off as Mesake Doge powered over the try line. Two Frank Lomani penalties seemed to put the Pacific islanders on the path to victory. But Rodrigo Marta had different plans.

If anyone had captured the reaction of Eddie Jones. Watching from Australia’s base in Saint-Étienne. They could probably name their price for the footage. Australia had to stay in France on the off chance that Portugal could secure a win with enough points to change their fate. Although few gave Portugal a chance. Especially after Georgia had challenged Fiji in the previous week. The Portuguese team played with unwavering tenacity and spirit, earning their place in the history of RWC.

All in all, it was a thrilling and chaotic RWC match. The sweltering conditions made handling the ball difficult. Resulting in errors amidst the entertainment. The score was tied at 3-3 at halftime, with Lomani and Marques trading penalties. Fiji had a chance to score the opening try if full-back Sireli Maqala hadn’t lost his footing at a crucial moment. Portugal’s Raffaele Storti also came agonizingly close, knocking the loose ball on just short of the try line.             

Portugal Makes History with Stunning Rugby World Cup Victory

Five minutes into the second half, Storti found the try line. It all started when fly-half Jeronimo Portela soared high to secure an impressive high ball. Portugal smoothly recycled the ball to the right. Where captain José Lima executed a perfectly placed grubber kick. Storti showcased his speed as he won the race to the ball. And Marques added the extra two points with a precise conversion from the touchline, granting Portugal a valuable seven-point lead.

Fiji, visibly shaken, faced another threat from Portugal down the left flank. However, a loose pass from Nicolas Martins presented Sireli Maqala with an opportunity to break free. Levani Botia eventually capitalized, scoring from close range. Lomani’s successful conversion leveled the score at 10-10.

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Moments later, Botia found himself in the sin bin for a high tackle on Marta. Portugal capitalized on the ensuing penalty, with loosehead prop Francisco Fernandes bulldozing his way over the try line. Botia’s yellow card was not upgraded to red due to Marta’s change of direction, but Portugal’s steadfast defense continued to frustrate Fiji.

Nevertheless, Fiji’s mounting pressure eventually paid off. As Mesake Doge squeezed over the try line. Lomani once again delivered a successful conversion and added two more penalties to the tally. Portugal retaliated through Marta. Who executed a superb inside line to score with barely a minute remaining. Marques faced a critical conversion after a lengthy break.

Portugal celebrated their historic first Rugby World Cup victory in magnificent fashion, securing a spot in the quarter-finals. The momentous win spelled the end of Australia’s World Cup campaign, marking it as the Wallabies’ worst-ever performance in the tournament. Meanwhile, Fiji, despite their heart-pounding loss to Portugal, clinched their berth in the World Cup quarter-finals, where they would face England.

Australia’s Unprecedented Rugby World Cup Exit Following Portugal’s Triumph

Australia’s Stunning Exit from Rugby World Cup After Portugal’s Triumph The Pacific Islanders only needed one point to secure the runner-up position in Pool C, just behind Wales. This unexpected outcome marks the first instance of Australia failing to progress beyond the pool stage in the tournament’s history.

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Fiji found themselves trailing by seven points twice during a closely contested second half. However, they fought back valiantly and eventually took a six-point lead as the game neared its conclusion. The Wallabies managed two wins against Georgia and Portugal but suffered defeats to Wales and Fiji, resulting in their failure to reach the World Cup finals for the very first time.

The team had stayed in France, hoping that Portugal would secure a win substantial enough to advance them beyond the pool stage. However, they will now return to Australia on Tuesday. Despite the setback, Rugby Australia officials have continued to support coach Eddie Jones, who holds a five-year contract, even as he has been linked to the Japan head coaching role.

In the 78th minute, Rodrigo Mata scored a sensational try. Which Samuel Marques expertly converted. Portugal’s remarkable performance earned them their first-ever World Cup victory. Man of the match, Nicolas Martins, struggled to express the significance of the moment. “We worked tirelessly for this. I’m at a loss for words; it’s historic… I believe it’s the greatest moment of my life.” Portugal’s captain, Jose Lima, was moved to tears and emphasized how much the victory meant to both fans and players. “You can see our fans, our team.

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Rugby World Cup: Ireland and Scotland Battle for Quarter-Final Berths

As the Rugby World Cup’s intense “group of death” nears its conclusion in Paris, Ireland, and Scotland prepare to face each other with a potential scenario in which both teams could advance to the quarter-finals at the expense of defending champions South Africa. Understanding Knockout Stage Scenarios Before the fate of teams in the pools is sealed.

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It’s crucial to comprehend the qualification process. During the pool stage, teams earn four points for a victory, two points for a draw, and a bonus point for scoring four tries or losing by seven points or fewer. When two teams are tied on points, the winner of their head-to-head match advances, regardless of points difference.

Remaining Fixtures (All times in BST) Pool A: France secured the top spot and a place in the last eight with an impressive 60-7 victory over Italy. New Zealand finished second, with their only loss coming against France in the tournament’s opening match. Italy claimed third place, earning automatic qualification for the 2023 Rugby World Cup in Australia. Uruguay managed one win, while Namibia couldn’t secure a victory.

Crucial Pool B Decider RWC: The outcome of Ireland vs Scotland match will determine the two countries advancing from Pool B. Ireland will top the group if they avoid defeat or lose by seven points or fewer. A Scotland win, without allowing Ireland to earn a bonus point, would secure their spot in the quarter-finals and eliminate Ireland from contention. Should Scotland not achieve the required margin of victory.

Qualification Scenarios: Ireland and Scotland Eye South Africa’s Quarter-Final Spot

In the highly anticipated conclusion of the “group of death” in the Rugby World Cup, Ireland, and Scotland are set to face each other, and the potential scenario that has rugby enthusiasts buzzing is one where both teams could advance to the Rugby World Cup Quarter-Finals. Potentially ousting the defending champions, South Africa, in the process.

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Understanding the Knockout Stage Scenarios Before we dive into the thrilling showdown between Ireland and Scotland, let’s get a firm grasp of the qualification process. During the pool stage, teams earn four points for a victory, two points for a draw, and a coveted bonus point for scoring four tries or suffering a narrow defeat by seven points or less. When two teams find themselves tied on points, it’s a straightforward decision: the winner of their head-to-head battle advances, irrespective of points difference.

A Decisive Showdown in Pool B The focal point of attention centers on Ireland vs Scotland clash, which will determine the two countries advancing from Pool B. Here’s how it plays out: Ireland secures the top spot if they manage to avoid defeat or lose by seven points or fewer. However, for Scotland to leapfrog them into the top spot, they must win by a margin of 21 points or more.

In Pool C, the story unfolds as follows: Wales became the first nation to guarantee their place in the Rugby World Cup Quarter-Finals with a game to spare. Warren Gatland’s team only requires a bonus point in their final match against Georgia to solidify their top spot. This advantage arises from their victory over Fiji in the opening game, potentially giving them the upper hand should both nations conclude with equal points.

Quarter-Final Race: England, Samoa, and South Africa’s Rugby World Cup Journey

In Pool D of the Rugby World Cup, England and Samoa will face off on October 7th, while Japan will take on Argentina on October 8th. England has already secured a spot in the knockout stage as Pool D winners, thanks in part to Japan’s victory over Samoa, sealing their progression with a game to spare.

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Argentina and Japan are vying for second place in the pool and will meet each other on October 8th to determine who advances to the rugby World Cup quarter-finals. A draw in their match could be sufficient to secure second place, depending on whether either team earns a bonus point and the result of Samoa’s match against England. If both Argentina and Japan secure try-scoring bonus points in a draw, Argentina will claim second place based on points difference. However, if neither team earns a bonus point in the draw, Samoa would need to defeat England by at least 29 points while scoring four or more tries to have the best points difference among the three teams and finish second.

Meanwhile, in Pool B, Ireland and Scotland are set to face each other in the final group stage match. There’s significant discussion surrounding the possibility that both teams could progress to the knockout stage at the expense of reigning champions South Africa.

For Scotland to secure advancement, they must defeat Ireland by at least 21 points and obtain a bonus point. In this scenario, Ireland could still qualify in second place by securing their own bonus point. Which entails scoring at least four tries. This would result in all three teams finishing with 15 points. Scotland would claim the top spot based on points difference. Ireland secured second place in RWC due to their head-to-head victory over South Africa earlier in the tournament.

Rugby World Cup: Teams’ Responses to Controversial Pool B Scenario

South Africa, Ireland, and Scotland are facing a unique scenario in the Rugby World Cup’s Pool B. The possibility of both Ireland and Scotland advancing to the quarter-finals at the expense of South Africa has stirred up discussions. Here’s what each team has to say about the situation:

South Africa’s Perspective: South Africa started their campaign with an 18-3 victory over Scotland. However, their 8-13 loss to Ireland has left them short of automatic qualification for the RWC quarter-finals. Head coach Jacques Nienaber firmly dismissed the notion of Ireland and Scotland conspiring to eliminate the Springboks from the tournament. He stated that such actions would be akin to match-fixing and expressed his hope that rugby maintains its integrity.

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Ireland’s Response: Ireland’s assistant coach, Mike Catt, addressed the suggestion of collusion between Ireland and Scotland. He referred to it as “white noise in the background” and categorically denied any such plans. Catt stated that there is no intention for Ireland to let Scotland win by 21 points or more. He entrusted the scoreline permutations to head coach Andy Farrell, who is fully aware of the team’s requirements. Catt emphasized that both teams need to win the game.

Scotland’s Reaction: Scotland’s assistant coach, Pete Horne, responded with laughter to the idea of collusion between Scotland and Ireland. He described it as a “ridiculous” suggestion and revealed that it hadn’t even been a topic of discussion within the team. Horne emphasized that their sole focus is on the upcoming match on Saturday night, considering it a significant challenge in itself.

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England vs. Samoa: Clash of Styles in the Rugby World Cup

Jonny May is gearing up for the Rugby World Cup in France. Where he believes his international career will come to a close. However, he sees this as an opportunity for England to secure the coveted trophy. And is determined to make the most of his “bonus time” on the field. Initially left out of England’s squad for the tournament, May received a lifeline. Anthony Watson’s injury led to his inclusion in the starting lineup for the final pool-stage match against Samoa.

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Despite harboring hopes of making the British & Irish Lions tour of South Africa earlier in 2021. A challenging Six Nations campaign dashed those dreams for May and several of Eddie Jones’s players. May now view each additional international honor as a delightful surprise. With England already securing a spot in the quarter-finals and a potential clash with Fiji on the horizon. He is determined to conclude his career with a Rugby World Cup winner’s medal.

He stated, “This will be my last Rugby World Cup, most likely my last time playing for England.” May acknowledges the significance of this campaign and the importance of giving his all in his remaining time on the field. He is motivated to perform at his best and avoid ending his career on an unsatisfactory note.

May’s Resurgence: England’s Rugby World Cup Redemption

Jonny May reflects on his rugby journey, acknowledging that while the 2021. Lions tour was a significant goal that eluded him, he is now at peace with that outcome. He sees his international career as bonus time, beyond the Lions tour, and is fully accepting of this perspective. May recognizes the importance of making the most of this bonus time, as England has a golden opportunity to secure victory in the Rugby World Cup. And he is determined to make his teammates, family, and country proud.

In France, Rugby World Cup May has solidified his position as a key player, earning a place back in the starting lineup. Despite Henry Arundell’s impressive performance with five tries against Chile in England’s previous match. May understands the unique strengths he brings to the team, particularly his exceptional kick-chasing abilities. He believes he can still compete with the best in the sport and is motivated to contribute his full range of skills to the team’s success.

England’s focus is now on their upcoming match against Samoa in Lille. The team has already secured a spot in the quarter-finals, ensuring a first-place finish in Pool D. Head coach Steve Borthwick has made minimal changes to the starting XV. With Jonny May and captain Owen Farrell being notable additions. Additionally, Tom Curry is set to earn his 49th test cap after returning from a two-match suspension. England is taking no chances and is fully committed to their Rugby World Cup campaign.

Rugby World Cup 2027: Samoa’s High Stakes Match Against England

In the upcoming Rugby World Cup match, England’s starting front row, consisting of Ellis Genge, Jamie George, and Dan Cole, mirrors the lineup from their convincing 48-14 victory over Samoa in 2017. Meanwhile, Samoa has its sights set on securing third place and a spot in the Rugby World Cup 2027 in Australia. They know that automatic qualification for the next tournament is not within their control. The final decision on the second quarter-finalist from Pool D will be determined by Argentina and Japan in their upcoming Sunday match.

Head coach Seilala Mapusua has made significant changes to Samoa’s starting XV for the match in RWC. This includes an entirely new front row comprising Jordan Lay, Sama Malolo, and captain Michael Alaalatoa, as well as a fresh second-row duo of Sam Slade and Brian Alainu’u’ese. Only a handful of players, namely Theo McFarland, Fritz Lee, Steven Luatua, Jonathan Taumateine, Tumua Manu, and Duncan Paia’aua, will retain their positions from the previous match, which ended in a 28-22 loss to Japan.

The outcome of the Japan vs. Argentina match in Nantes will ultimately determine the quarter-final qualification and an Australia berth. A surprise victory for Samoa in their upcoming match could increase the pressure on both Japan and Argentina at Stade de la Beaujoire. England has been the most prolific kicking team in the tournament, averaging over 42 kicks per game. They boast the highest success rate in the Rugby World Cup for regaining possession from these kicks.

Samoa’s Rugby World Cup Challenge: Battling Tier-One Preparation

For head coach Steve Borthwick, success as a coach has often come through effective game plans. And relentless pressure, even if it doesn’t always result in the most attractive style of play. Leicester’s recent success in the Premiership, where they topped the table in 2022, serves as an example. Despite scoring fewer tries than the teams below them, Leicester’s approach delivered results and trophies. Borthwick appears to be banking on the cohesion of the selected 15 players in this match. Their first outing together before the intense pressure of the knockout stage in the Rugby World Cup.

In a Rugby World Cup sideshow, Owen Farrell is steadily closing in on a significant milestone of his own. With just one point shy of Jonny Wilkinson’s total of 1179, this upcoming match could be the one. Where he surpasses the World Cup winner to become England’s all-time leading Test points scorer. During Thursday’s media conference, Samoa’s initial focus seemed to be more on words than numbers. Some of their players engaged in a private bet to see if they could slip certain phrases into their answers.

Steven Luatua shared how he had been learning the songs sung by his grandparents. Since switching his international allegiance from New Zealand, he added a personal touch to the conversation. Lima Sopoaga, another former All-Black, humorously mentioned his ongoing quest to find a cherished kicking tee that mysteriously disappeared after their opening-round victory over Chile. However, Coach Mapusua brought a more serious perspective to the discussion. He pointed out that Samoa had faced four tier-one teams in this Rugby World Cup, highlighting the stark contrast in their preparation compared to England’s.

Samoa’s Call for Clarity: Addressing Disparities in Rugby World Cup Preparation

While Samoa played only 15 matches between the last two tournaments, often against invitational or secondary teams, England had a significantly higher number of matches—40, mostly against established top-tier opponents. When asked about this glaring difference, Mapusua expressed his desire for more clarity and opportunities for his team to play more Test matches between Rugby World Cups believing that increased game time would lead to improvements.

England’s scrum coach, Tom Harrison, emphasized the need for his side to “front up” against Samoa in the Rugby World Cup this weekend, recognizing the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead. The Pacific Islanders are renowned for their physical prowess, and they are determined to display that attribute on Saturday in Lille.

According to lock Brian Alainu’u’ese, this style means performing one’s duties to the best of their ability while infusing physicality into every aspect of the game, all with a smile on their face. In the northern France Rugby World Cup, Samoa’s squad will encounter a familiar face in Manu Tuilagi, who is not only an England player but also a fluent Samoan speaker. Tuilagi will be lining up at center for England against the country of his birth for the first time.

Tusi Pisi, Samoa’s assistant coach, echoed the sentiment of embracing their Samoan identity and playing with a similar level of commitment and physicality. He playfully mentioned the exchange of gifts on the field between Tuilagi and his Samoan compatriots, signifying the shared respect and competitive spirit that will define their Rugby World Cup encounter.

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