Friday saw the much anticipated 8th Rugby World Cup get underway with Hosts England winning against Fiji. Many fans will be happy that the tournament has finally got underway and it has already thrown up some huge surprises.
We take a look at the Long Shot’s chances for the tournament:
Some are saying that Japan’s victory over South Africa on Saturday was the greatest sporting upset of all time, and it’s hard to argue with that fact. With no real form heading into the tournament it was hard to see this one coming, however it looks like veteran coach, Eddie Jones, has brought the best out of the Cherry Blossoms. After Making Sushi out of the Springboks, Japan face Scotland today. Some are saying Japan are at a disadvantage having already put in 110% for 80 minutes on Saturday whilst Scotland rested, but with passion, momentum and confidence on their side, anything is possible.
Result: 32 – 34 South Africa V Japan
Result: 45 – 10 Scotland V Japan:
Who’s next for Japan
Samoa V Japan – Milton Keynes – Saturday 3rd Oct – 2:30pm
USA V Japan – Gloucester – Sunday – 11th Oct – 8pm
Our prediction for Japan:
With their confidence sky high after beating Japan we think that the Cherry Blossoms have what it takes to get to the knockout stages: Quarter Finals
Uruguay face possibly the toughest task out of any of the smaller teams. They are a team made up of only 4 Professionals the rest include a doctor, an agronomist, a financier, a graphic designer, a dotcom entrepreneur, a PR man and an advertising executive, as well as several students. Uruguay truly are longshots and can be proud that they managed to score 9 points against Wales. Being in the Group of death means that Uruguay are almost certainly going to be one of the first teams to be eliminated. They will, however, have the fans on their side throughout the tournament!
Result: 54 – 9 Wales V Uruguay
Who’s next for Wales?
Australia V Uruguay – Villa Park – Sunday 27th September – 12pm
Fiji V Uruguay – Milton Keynes – Tuesday 6th October – 8pm
England V Uruguay – Etihad Stadium – Saturday Oct 10th – 8pm
Our Prediction for Uruguay:
Unfortunately we can’t see Uruguay progressing from the group stages. We hope that they can cause an upset and being the underdogs neutrals will undoubtedly cheer them on.
The ever improving Georgia are a team to look out for. They produced a huge upset on Saturday beating the more experienced favourites Tonga. Unfortunately this was overshadowed by Saturdays other big shock. It shows just exactly how much teams such as Georgia have improved in recent years. Tbilisi witnessed scenes of huge celebration after the result, said to have rivalled the country’s greatest ever sporting achievement, when Dinamo Tbilisi won the UEFA Cup Winners Cup. It is great news for Rugby fans that countries like Georgia are massively improving and we may yet see another Surprising result.
Result: 10– 34 Tonga V Georgia
Who’s next for Georgia?
Argentina V Georgia – Gloucester – Friday Sept 25th – 4:45pm
New Zealand V Georgia –Millennium Stadium– Sunday Sept 27th – 2:30pm
Namibia V Georgia – Exeter – Wednesday October 7th – 8pm
Our Prediction for Georgia:
Despite Georgia getting off to a flyer we see them struggling to get out of their group, New Zealand will undoubtedly storm through to the knockout stages, with Argentina expected to finish second. Georgia V Argentina will be a very tasty game, because if Georgia win then they could find themselves a World Cup quarter final. Knocked out in the groups
Romania get their campaign underway on Wednesday and like all the other smaller teams in the tournament will be encouraged by Japan and Georgia’s performances in their opening games. They open their campaign against France having played them 50 times in their history, they have however lost on 39 of those occasions. History counts for nothing I this world cup, and their recent form, winning 6 from their last 9 games shows that the momentum is with them. Like all of the smaller nations, Romanias biggest strength is the team unity and national pride. Will this be enough to get close against the big boys?
Result: 38 – 11 France V Romania
Who’s next for Romania?
Ireland V Romania – Wembley – Sunday Sept 27th – 4:45pm
Canada V Romania – Leicester – Tuesday Oct 6th – 4:45pm
Our Prediction for Romania:
Being in a group which contains Ireland, France and Italy it will be very difficult for Romania to get out of their group. Whilst they might throw up some surprises we think that Romania will struggle to progress: Knocked out in the groups