- Despite concerns over their opponent’s world ranking and previous defeat, England delivered a commanding performance with a 27-10 victory over Argentina.
- Read about the thrilling clash between France and the All Blacks, where France emerged victorious with a 27-13 win, capturing the attention of their home crowd.
- On the other hand, Ireland’s Rugby World Cup campaign kicked off with a resounding 82-8 victory over Romania, marking their biggest-ever win in the competition.
We examine the talking points from the Rugby World Cup’s opening weekend in advance of the second round. Wales managed a win against Fiji, but Scotland was upset by South Africa, putting their World Cup aspirations at risk in a difficult Pool B; we look at how the results from week one may affect week two. Highlights from day two of the Rugby World Cup in France, where Italy, Ireland, Australia, and England all won their opening matches.
Is England on the rise?
The possibility of a loss loomed due to Argentina’s better world rating and their victory over England at Twickenham last year. Still, the 27-10 victory has silenced many sceptics and greatly improved England’s chances of progressing out of their group and into the quarterfinals.
Even though Tom Curry won’t be available for England’s encounter against Japan, Billy Vunipola’s return from suspension will be welcomed, and the team’s confidence will have soared. As a result, the England manager’s selection dilemma has grown. Could the player who was banished from this England team and hadn’t started a Test since 2021 before Saturday keep the captain firmly on his toes for a position against Samoa with another strong performance, now that Owen Farrell has been suspended for yet another game?
France and Ireland attest to being in the first place!
France battled back to defeat the All Blacks 27-13 in front of their home crowd in their hardest group-stage matchup to date against them in the World Cup opener. Ireland’s athletes were happy to begin their Rugby World Cup campaign with their biggest-ever victory at the competition, an 82-8 victory over Romania. France’s next matchup against Uruguay should be simpler than Ireland’s matchup with Tonga.
Wales has survived a fright; will things get better?
Wales’ close win over Fiji could have been seen as more surprising if Fiji hadn’t already beaten England in their last warm-up match before the World Cup, which happened for the first time. And there were instances where managing your soldiers became important while you were in charge of the game. According to Warren Gatland, Wales’ Rugby World Cup victory over Fiji was aided by ‘stupid’ game management from his team. They will now try to come together more as a team in preparation for Portugal, who they face in their second group game after being brutally defeated by Australia and Georgia.
Scotland is in trouble in the group of death, while the Springboks appear to be in good shape.
Any team in Pool B will have felt unfairly disregarded when the World Cup groupings were revealed. The initial defeat against the reigning champions, South Africa, has significantly impacted their aspirations. However, if they manage to triumph over Tonga this week and approach their final pool match against Ireland with a meaningful objective, the outcome remains unpredictable. Ritchie highlights the fact that the team has three important matches remaining to manoeuvre through.