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Here it is – the match on the second weekend of the Rugby World Cup 2023 that rugby fans circled months ago. With Australia vulnerable in 2023, and Fiji a new beast over recent years, this clash could have huge ramifications on how this tournament is shaping up. Read on for our Australia vs Fiji predictions.
Australia vs Fiji – match predictions
- 1 Australia vs Fiji – match predictions
- 2 Australia vs Fiji preview: Can Fiji handle the weight of expectation?
- 3 Australia vs Fiji match details
Australia scored their first win of the year last weekend, dispatching Georgia by a moderately comfortable 35-5. Fiji, on the other hand, were denied a last minute comeback against Wales, falling devastatingly short 32-26. Here are our top predictions ahead of the Australia vs Fiji this weekend:
Prediction 1: Fiji to win 1-12 @ 11/4 (3.75)
The boys from the Pacific fell painstakingly short last weekend, but we say there will be no such heartbreak this time. This is a team that has defeated England in 2023, kept it competitive against France, and won in victories over Japan, Tonga and Samoa as well. Plus, many of their core upset the Crusaders and Hurricanes in Super Rugby Pacific, or were off winning gold medals at the Olympics for the Sevens team. All this to say: Fiji know how to win, they have been winning, and it won’t be an upset if they do so against Australia.
Speaking of the Aussies, don’t let their result against Georgia fool you. They’re still one from six this year, and missing the presence of Taniela Tupou for this match. Expect the Fijians smart rugby and never-say-die attitude to be too much for the Wallabies, with Fiji getting the result here to blow Pool C wide open.
Prediction 2: Australia/Fiji halftime/fulltime result @ 9/1 (10.00)
With so much expectation on Fiji’s shoulders heading into this match, it would be no surprise to see Australia take a lead into the break. The Fijians are all about their late comeback wins, and we say that’s what we’ll see this Sunday.
Australia vs Fiji preview: Can Fiji handle the weight of expectation?
Heading into this match, here’s a look at how both teams’ tournaments have gone so far at the Rugby World Cup 2023:
Australia did well to thwart a tricky opening match against Georgia, putting 35 points on the Georgians to come away with maximum points. Before this, however, the Aussies had had a woeful 2023, losing all five of their matches against New Zealand (2), Argentina, South Africa and France. With the least experienced team they’ve ever taken to a World Cup, under the leadership of Eddie Jones (again), this is a Wallabies team that looks vulnerable to say the least.
It was an impressive, if not ultimately fruitless, opening outing for Fiji. They came one dropped pass short of upsetting Wales, with Radrandra spilling a wide pass in front of an open tryline in overtime. The island nation are playing a great brand of rugby, refusing to play rucks in their own half, but maintaining their Fijian x-factor and keeping the ball alive with their natural flare and talent.
Australia vs Fiji head to head
These two sides have met 22 times before, with Australia winning 19, Fiji two, and one draw. Interestingly, both of Fiji’s wins came in the first four fixtures, with the Pacific nation unable to defeat Australia since 1954. Most recently, the Wallabies won 39-21 at the 2019 Rugby World Cup.
Australia vs Fiji match details
- Date and time: Sunday 17 September, 4:45 PM GMT
- Venue: Stade Geoffroy Guichard, Saint Etienne, France
- How to watch: ITV, ITVX or SC4 in the UK
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