Published: Sat, September 21, 2019
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

South Africa name team for NZ clash at RWC

South Africa name team for NZ clash at RWC

Japan will head into the opening match of the Rugby World Cup against Russian Federation on Friday with the support of a nation keen to make their mark on the world stage by hosting an immaculate tournament and seeing their team succeed on the field.

"If you tack on a game against Australia or New Zealand or whoever, then you make it viable as a tour". I played my first Test and we couldn't get a win so hopefully the 50th can be a lucky one.

The experience of Francois Louw trumped the X-factor of Kwagga Smith as the Springboks named a predictable match-23 for Saturday's World Cup opener against the All Blacks in Yokohama. "I think we have a healthy respect for each other's capabilities but it will come down to a small moment to decide a big game in the end, I suppose". "There's a lot of water to go under the bridge".

1999 World Cup winning forward Owen Finegan said the rest of the world could take plenty out of belief out of Ireland's performances against the All Blacks in the past four years, including a win in Chicago and the side's first ever win over New Zealand in Dublin.

The last four Tests between the Springboks and All Blacks decided by 2 points or less, including the draw in Wellington eight weeks ago.

"Both teams understand that".

"I look around the room at the team-mates and the talent we have and we can beat anybody if we are at our best". They roll the dice big time - their wingers come in off their wings. Especially, you don't want to lose your opening game.

"You speak to a Tongan and you talk about the country and you say "so you're from Tonga". "The players are aware of that". You have to be lean and mean.' - Namibia assistant coach Jaco Engels warns the front rowers they will have their work cut out in Japan.

'Saudi oil output to recover in two or three weeks after attack'
However, there are fresh worries about the impact on the already stuttering world economy from the Saudi oil attacks on Saturday. But as tensions have risen, the US has put increasing restrictions on Iranians like Zarif.

World Rugby bosses have hit back at claims 31-man World Cup squads threaten player welfare by insisting top coaches left their objections too late to have any effect for the 2019 tournament in Japan.

But Hansen said their current form was a return to their normal standards.

"I know a lot of the England players now, so I can sum them up a bit better".

"I guess if you ask our boys we think we've got a really good chance, I think if you ask Steve [Hansen, New Zealand coach] and their team, they'll think they think they have a really good chance. They are selecting a team on a genuine basis that they are all good enough to be there".

If Ireland live up to their world No 1 ranking and Rory Best lifts the Webb Ellis Cup, he will thank England for the embarrassing wake-up call handed out at Twickenham last month.

Wales have been injury hit in the build-up to the Rugby World Cup and must be careful to avoid an early exit, while the Wallabies have been far from formidable over the previous year and could well dismissed early in the knockout stages. "It seems to be working all right".

"We're expecting a new arrow to their quiver", he said before a training session in the shadow of Tokyo Disneyland. New Zealand has won the last two.

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