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Fiji vs Georgia: The unlikely Pool C decider

By PA
PA

Fiji head coach Simon Raiwalui is braced for a physical onslaught from Georgia in a Pool C clash which could spell the end of Australia’s World Cup.

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The Wallabies’ participation in France is on a knife-edge following defeats to Wales and Fiji.

And if Fiji secure a bonus-point win against Georgia in Bordeaux on Saturday, Eddie Jones’ Australia will be out of the tournament before the knockout phase for the first time.

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Fiji have won four of their six matches against Georgia, and a fifth win from seven would put them in a strong position to qualify for the quarter-finals for the first time since 2007 ahead of their concluding group match against Portugal.

“It’s going to be a physical game,” said Raiwalui. “We know them quite well because we’ve played them quite often.

“They’re fit, they’ve obviously prepared well, and they love to play with that physicality, something that we like to do as well.

“We’re at similar stages of our development, we’re looking to get further and move up further with bigger matches outside the World Cup. We have the utmost respect for Georgia and what they’re doing and we understand it’s going to be a very tough match.”

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Fiji make just one change from the line-up that secured a memorable 22-15 win against Australia, with Selestino Ravutaumada replacing Jiuta Wainiqolo, who is suffering from an ankle problem.

Fourth-placed Georgia still have an outside chance at reaching the last eight following an 18-18 draw against Portugal last time out in their second game of the tournament.

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M
Mzilikazi 8 hours ago
Swashbuckling Hurricanes and Harlequins show scrum still matters

I always enjoy a good scrum based article. Thanks, Nick. The Hurricanes are looking more and more the team to beat down here in Australasia. They are a very well balanced team. And though there are far fewer scrums in the game these days, destructive power in that area is a serious weapon, especially an attacking scrum within in the red zone. Aumua looked very good as a young first year player, but then seemed to fade. He sure is back now right in the picture for the AB’s. And I would judge that Taukei’aho is in a bit of a slump currently. Watching him at Suncorp a few weeks ago, I thought he was not as dominant in the game as I would have expected. I am going to raise an issue in that scrum at around the 13 min mark. I see a high level of danger there for the TH lifted off the ground. He is trapped between the opposition LH and his own powerful SR. His neck is being put under potentially dangerous pressure. The LH has, in law , no right to use his superior scrummaging skill….getting his head right in on the breastbone of the TH…..to force him up and off the ground. Had the TH popped out of the scrum, head up and free, there is no danger, that is a clear penalty to the dominant scrum. The law is quite clear on this issue: Law 37 Dangerous play and restricted practices in a scrum. C:Intentionally lifting an opponent off their feet or forcing them upwards out of the scrum. Sanction: Penalty. Few ,if any, referees seem to be aware of this law, and/or the dangers of the situation. Matthew Carly, refereeing Clermont v Munster in 2021, penalised the Munster scrum, when LH Wycherly was lifted very high, and in my view very dangerously, by TH Slimani. Lifting was coached in the late ‘60’s/70’s. Both Lions props, Ray McLouglin, and “Mighty Mouse” McLauchlan, were expert and highly successful at this technique. I have seen a photo, which I can’t find online atm, of MM with a NZ TH(not an AB) on his head, MM standing upright as the scrum disintegrates.

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