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On the fourth edition of ‘Super Saturday’ at the Rugby World Cup, the group-stage begins to enter its business end as quarter-finals and plane tickets home are booked.
France, Ireland, Wales and England are the four teams qualified, leaving just four places left for the best in the world to fight for.
Today’s Rugby World Cup matches
Argentina vs Chile
After Japan’s win over Samoa on Thursday night, Argentina know exactly what is required of them to qualify for their fifth ever Rugby World Cup quarter-final. Los Pumas must first beat Chile in this fixture, before beating Japan in the final round of group games in what will be a straight-shootout for the chance to play Wales in the knockouts.
Chile, on the hand, cannot qualify and will be playing for pride. Their debut Rugby World Cup has had ups-and-downs, they played valiantly against Japan and Samoa but were beaten heavily by England, 71-0. This game will be a chance to redeem their tournament and an opportunity to score some tries with Argentina picking a heavily-weakened side, while Chile welcome back a few of their star players in Ayarza and Torrealba.
Fiji vs Georgia
Fiji have been the dark horses of Rugby World Cup 2023 and everyone’s second favourite team. After narrowly losing to Wales in the last play of the game in one of the games of the tournament, they stunningly defeated the Wallabies to all but send them home. Now all Fiji need is five pool-points from this game versus Georgia and their game next week versus Portugal, to advance to the quarter-finals and send Australia packing. Meaning they could lose this match and still qualify. Fiji have captured hearts at Rugby World Cup 2023 for their joyful and passionate style of play and this fixture promises to deliver another thoroughly exciting spectacle.
Georgia come into this fixture in sever contrast to Fiji. They were embarrassed to have drawn 18-18 with Rugby Europe rivals Portugal last week and have massively underachieved at Rugby World Cup 2023. Levan Maishavili’s and his team will be eager to prove how good they can be and deliver the upset victory that many expected Georgia to produce prior to the tournament. A win here would not only be sensational shock and one of Georgia rugby’s greatest ever victory, it would earn Georgia third in the group and condemn Australia to fourth.
Scotland vs Romania
And finally to Lille as Scotland re-commence mission impossible to advance from their group, labelled the ‘group of death’. Scotland were bizarrely almost eliminated after playing just one game, after losing to South Africa who have won all their matches except Ireland, who have won three from three. So, after beating Tonga, Scotland’s task is clear, beat Romania with a try bonus point and go and do the same against Ireland next week and they earn a place in the quarter-final versus France. Maybe easier said than done but the only way to weasel out of one of the hardest Rugby World Cup groups ever.
Romania have probably had the toughest ride of any team at the Rugby World Cup. Lumped in the toughest group and missing some key personnel, they’ve copped some stick for not being good enough after losing 82-8 to Ireland and 76-0 to South Africa. As well as a game against Tonga next week, this is their last chance to prove their good enough and potentially throw a massive spanner in the works of Scotland’s quarter-final hopes.
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