RWC 2015 Round-Up – Week 2: The Bokkes bounce-back, as chariots are derailed by dragons…

Just another week at the RWC2015!

#AUSvFJI

The Wallabies kicked off their tournament against Fiji but failed to secure the coveted bonus point. 

The pool of death, PoolA, remains there for the taking!wpid-img_20150922_205057.jpgwpid-img_20150923_183334.jpgwpid-img_20150922_205241.jpg

#SCOvJPN

Following Japan’s monumental game against South Africa four days earlier, the rugby world eagerly awaited Japan’s return to Kingsholm to see if they could further cement their position in Pool B.  However, disappointingly, it was not meant to be, as Scotland thwarted Japan’s ambitions for knock-out stage glory.wpid-img_20150923_094057.jpg

#NZLvNAM

A gutsy performance by Namibia led All Blacks coach, Steve Hansen, to declare Jacques Burger’s Namibia as “worthy opponents”, proving that Tier 2 teams are able to put pressure on the powerhouses of international rugby.wpid-img_20150924_210518.jpgwpid-img_20150924_220102.jpgwpid-img_20150925_083813.jpg

#FRAvROM

France predictably beat Romania at the glorious Olympic Stadium in East London and  continue to look dangerous for  the title.wpid-img_20150923_195121.jpgwpid-img_20150923_215016.jpg

#ARGvGEO

Argentina secured a record World Cup win against Georgia making a place in the quarters a sure thing for the Pumas. #VamosPumaswpid-img_20150925_001407.jpgwpid-img_20150925_183225.jpg

#ITAvCAN

It was a thrilling match at #EllandRoad as Canada held their own against Italy. Mauro Bergamasco made history as he became the first player to make five consecutive World Cup appearances, having made his debut against England in 1999.  Well deserving of the “superhero” accolade on #BatmanDay !wpid-img_20150926_133925.jpgwpid-img_20150926_161827.jpg

#RSAvSAM

Can the Bokkes bounce back? Yes they can! After their humiliating defeat at the hands of the Brave Blossoms last week, South Africa took their fury out on their next opponents, Samoa.  Sadly, it was confirmed after the match that captain and talisman Jean de Villiers would be retiring from international rugby as he suffered a fractured jaw during the match.  A sure loss to the Sringbox but also for the sport as a whole.

But it was not all about RSA: not wanting to be outdone, Samoa made this yet another historic RWC game as the three Pisi brothers (George, Ken and Tusi) played together, making them the first in World Cup history to do so. #LeManuwpid-img_20150926_144635.jpgwpid-img_20150926_184940.jpgwpid-img_20150926_183219.jpg

#ENGvWAL

And then it was time for THE game of the tournament so far, with bitter rivals England taking on Wales at Twickenham. After a convincing start for the hosts, the last twenty minutes saw the Chariots disintegrate into chaos, as the wounded dragons delivered a  marginal win against all the odds.

IMG_20150926_151407The brilliant composure (and Macarena-esq kicking prep routine, now being referred to as the Biggarena) of Dan Biggar saw the Osprey’s player make history by scoring a record 23 points, the most by a Welsh player in any single World Cup game to date.IMG_20150927_112143

But the victory came at an awful price, as Wales suffered three more injuries at the hands of bulldozer Burgess and company.  It has yet to be seen whether Wales’ depleted pack can survive what Fiji and Australia will inevitably throw their way, and to see if they can secure their place in the knock-out round. Let’s hope their resilience and courage takes them the full distance.IMG_20150926_211152

#AUSvURU

Australia added to England’s woes  today as they racked up a significant win against Uruguay. Their bonus point and point tally puts Australia firmly at the top of the table, with England currently sitting in third place.IMG_20150927_104710IMG_20150927_135411

But all is not lost for England, as a win against Australia and Uruguay could yet see them avoid the infamy of becoming the first hosts to fail to move past the group stage. All eyes will be on Wales against Fiji on Thursday, as a loss for Wales would spark much needed optimism within the England camp!

#SCOvUSA

After a solid start and half time lead for the States, the Eagles failed to exploit their momentum as Scotland stole the game.IMG_20150927_140627IMG_20150927_162015IMG_20150927_151936

#IREvROM

Ireland continued their winning form in a comfortable, although not perfect, performance over Romania. There was also a hat-trick for veteran winger Tommy Bowe.  

A record RWC crowd attended this group game at Wembley 89,267! It is looking likely that Pool D winner will be determined by the epic IREvFRA clash in Cardiff scheduled for the 11th October.IMG_20150927_163045IMG_20150927_183542

Nerves will be high for Pool A in Thursday as Wales take on Fiji – It’ll be crunch time all over again!!wpid-img_20150920_115323.jpg

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