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RWC 2023 R5: Quarter finals confirmed while Portugal light up Toulouse

TOULOUSE, FRANCE - OCTOBER 08: Rodrigo Marta of Portugal scores his team's third try during the Rugby World Cup France 2023 match between Fiji and Portugal at Stadium de Toulouse on October 08, 2023 in Toulouse, France. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)

The final round of Rugby World Cup 2023 saved the best for last, with a thrilling match that was the final piece in the fairly straight forward puzzle of who now moves on to the Quarter Finals stage.

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New Zealand secured their sport with an emphatic 73-0 victory over Uruguay, France asserted their authority in Pool A with a commanding 60-7 win against Italy, Wales claimed the top spot by defeating Georgia 43-19, England clinched a nail-biting 18-17 win over Samoa, while Ireland proved their mettle with a convincing 36-14 triumph over Scotland in Pool B.

However, the standout match, and upset, of the round was Portugal’s historic 24-23 victory over Fiji, marking their first-ever Rugby World Cup win.

NEW ZEALAND VS URUGUAY 73-0

The All Blacks secured their place in the quarter-finals with an impressive 73-0 victory over Uruguay at OL Stadium. Damian McKenzie’s outstanding performance led the All Blacks, who scored more than 50 points for the third consecutive game. Despite Uruguay’s spirited start, New Zealand kicked into gear and dominated, with Richie Mo’unga and McKenzie himself contributing to the scoreline. The All Blacks earned a bonus point and carried their momentum into the knockout stages, where they will face a far tougher challenge in Ireland. Sam Whitelock celebrated his 150th cap for New Zealand, while Uruguay displayed admirable spirit and pride despite the loss.

NEXT MATCH: Quarter final, New Zealand vs Ireland – Saturday, 14 October

Attack

228
Passes
96
173
Ball Carries
88
568m
Post Contact Metres
152m
15
Line Breaks
3

FRANCE VS ITALY 60-7

France clinched top spot in Pool A with another impressive performance, dismissing Italy with relative ease thanks to the likes of winger Damian Penaud, who picked up two tries and contributed with assists of his own. France now head to the quarter-finals with confidence, where they will face South Africa, while Italy’s tournament ends with two losses. Player of the Match Gregory Alldritt expressed satisfaction post game, while France’s head coach Fabien Galthié praised the team’s performance.

NEXT MATCH: Quarter final, France vs South Africa – Sunday, 15 October

Fixture
Rugby World Cup
France
28 - 29
Full-time
South Africa
All Stats and Data

WALES VS GEORGIA 43-19

Wales continued their unbeaten run with a solid victory over Georgia at Stade de la Beaujoire, hanging on to top spot in Pool C. Louis Rees-Zammit’s second-half hat-trick was crucial for Wales, while Georgia showed resilience with tries from Merab Sharikadze, Vano Karkadze, and Davit Niniashvili. Tommy Reffell, Player of the Match, acknowledged Georgia’s physicality, and Wales’ captain Dewi Lake emphasized the need for consistency. Wales will need to step up another level when they face Argentina in Marseille in the Quarter Finals.

NEXT MATCH: Quarter final, Wales vs Argentina – Saturday, 14 October

ENGLAND VS SAMOA 18-17

England got the job done but it came in the form of an error-strewn, hard-fought 18-17 victory over Samoa at Stade Pierre-Mauroy. England’s Ollie Chessum and Samoa’s Nigel Ah-Wong scored tries in the first half, with penalties exchanged by Owen Farrell and Lima Sopoaga. Despite having two tries disallowed by the TMO, England finally sealed the win with a converted try from Danny Care while Samoa were down to 14 men. Lima Sopoaga was named Player of the Match, while England’s captain, Owen Farrell – who became the first man ever to get timed out by the shotclock – praised Samoa’s performance and their resilience.

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NEXT MATCH: Quarter final, England vs Fiji – Sunday, 15 October

Head-to-Head

Last 3 Meetings

Wins
3
Draws
0
Wins
0
Average Points scored
31
13
First try wins
100%
Home team wins
100%

IRELAND VS SCOTLAND 36-14

The hyped up Pool B decider ended in a convincing win for Ireland, who secured their spot in the quarter-finals as Pool B winners with a 36-14 victory over Scotland at Stade de France. Ireland demonstrated their clinical prowess with early tries from Garry Ringrose and Hugo Keenan, while Scotland faced challenges with injuries to captain Jamie Ritchie and full-back Blair Kinghorn. Despite Scotland’s efforts, Ireland scored two more tries before the half, earning a bonus point. The final scoreline gave respectability to Scotland, but Ireland now face New Zealand in the quarter-finals, while Scotland bid a disappointing farewell and exit from the tournament before the knockout stages.

NEXT MATCH: Quarter final Ireland vs New Zealand – Saturday, 14 October

Fixture
Rugby World Cup
Ireland
24 - 28
Full-time
New Zealand
All Stats and Data

ARGENTINA VS JAPAN 39-27

In a true winner takes all contest, Argentina finally found a hint of the form we’ve all been waiting to see as they secured victory over Japan, placing them in the quarter-finals, where they will face Wales. Mateo Carreras’ brilliant hat-trick of tries played a pivotal role in Argentina’s win after Santiago Chocobares gave Argentina an early lead and Japan responded with an impressive try from Amato Fakatava. Carreras and Emiliano Boffelli added to Argentina’s lead, while Naoto Saito and Jone Naikabula scored for Japan. Argentina’s head coach, Michael Cheika, expressed relief and determination to improve, while Japan’s coach, Jamie Joseph, praised his team’s effort and growth in the tournament. While Japan reached the knockouts at home four years ago, 2023 will no doubt prove a disappointing showing, as they head home early.

NEXT MATCH: Quarter final Argentina vs Wales – Saturday, 14 October

Fixture
Rugby World Cup
Wales
17 - 29
Full-time
Argentina
All Stats and Data

TONGA VS ROMANIA 45-24

After a bruising loss but impressive display against South Africa a week ago, Tonga secured their first victory of Rugby World Cup 2023 with a bonus-point 45-24 win over Romania in Pool B at Stade Pierre-Mauroy. Tonga dominated early with tries from Solomone Kata, George Moala, and Afusipa Taumoepeau, but Romania fought back with two tries before halftime, before Tonga extended their lead with a try from Sione Vailanu. Romania scored two more tries, but Tonga sealed the win with tries from Pita Ahki, Kata, and impressive youngster Kyren Taumoefolau. George Moala was named Player of the Match, while both teams now exit the tournament.

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NEXT MATCH: Both head home

Points Flow Chart

Tonga win +21
Time in lead
73
Mins in lead
0
89%
% Of Game In Lead
0%
43%
Possession Last 10 min
57%
5
Points Last 10 min
0

PORTUGAL VS FIJI 24-23

In the game of the round and arguably the most entertaining match of the tournament so far, Portugal claimed their first-ever Rugby World Cup victory, defeating Fiji 24-23 at an electric Stadium de Toulouse. Despite securing a quarter-final spot against England by claiming a solitary losing bonus point, Fiji couldn’t stop Portugal’s historic win, which came about with a late Rodrigo Marta try that was made by both brilliant wingers combining. Nicolas Martins, Player of the Match, expressed his joy, and Portugal’s captain, José Lima, praised their deserving victory. Fiji’s coach, Simon Raiwalui, acknowledged Portugal’s performance and looked ahead to facing England in the quarter-finals.

NEXT MATCH: Quarter final, England vs Fiji – Sunday, 15 October

Match Summary

3
Penalty Goals
1
2
Tries
3
2
Conversions
3
0
Drop Goals
0
144
Carries
111
6
Line Breaks
8
15
Turnovers Lost
13
7
Turnovers Won
9

Rugby World Cup

Pool A
P
W
L
D
PF
PA
PD
BP T
BP-7
BP
Total
1
France
4
4
0
0
18
2
New Zealand
4
3
1
0
15
3
Italy
4
2
2
0
10
4
Uruguay
4
1
3
0
5
5
Namibia
4
0
4
0
0
Pool B
P
W
L
D
PF
PA
PD
BP T
BP-7
BP
Total
1
Ireland
4
4
0
0
19
2
South Africa
4
3
1
0
15
3
Scotland
4
2
2
0
10
4
Tonga
4
1
3
0
5
5
Romania
4
0
4
0
0
Pool C
P
W
L
D
PF
PA
PD
BP T
BP-7
BP
Total
1
Wales
4
4
0
0
19
2
Fiji
4
2
2
0
11
3
Australia
4
2
2
0
11
4
Portugal
4
1
2
1
6
5
Georgia
4
0
3
1
3
Pool D
P
W
L
D
PF
PA
PD
BP T
BP-7
BP
Total
1
England
4
4
0
0
18
2
Argentina
4
3
1
0
14
3
Japan
4
2
2
0
9
4
Samoa
4
1
3
0
7
5
Chile
4
0
4
0
0
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m
mitch 54 minutes ago
The Wallabies team Joe Schmidt must pick to win back Bledisloe Cup

Rodda will be a walk up starter at lock. Frost if you analyse his dominance has little impact and he’s a long way from being physical enough, especially when you compare to Rodda and the work he does. He was quite poor at the World Cup in his lack of physicality. Between Rodda and Skelton we would have locks who can dominate the breakdown and in contact. Frost is maybe next but Schmidt might go for a more physical lock who does their core work better like Ryan or LSL. Swain is no chance unless there’s a load of injuries. Pollard hasn’t got the scrum ability yet to be considered. Nasser dominated him when they went toe to toe and really showed him up. Picking Skelton effects who can play 6 and 8. Ideally Valetini would play 6 as that’s his best position and Wilson at 8 but that’s not ideal for lineout success. Cale isn’t physical enough yet in contact and defence but is the best backrow lineout jumper followed by Wright, Hanigan and Swinton so unfortunately Valetini probably will start at 8 with Wright or Hanigan at 6. Wilson on the bench, he’s got too much quality not to be in the squad. Paisami is leading the way at 12 but Hamish Stewart is playing extremely well also and his ball carrying has improved significantly. Beale is also another option based on the weekend. Beale is class but he’s also the best communicator of any Australian backline player and that can’t be underestimated, he’ll be in the mix.

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