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Thread: 2011 Rugby World Cup

  1. #21
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    I have finalized my pool stage (and subsequent knockout round) predictions.

    Pool A

    New Zealand at home. Need we ask any questions? No, we don't. If we don't win the group, heads will roll. I don't see us not winning it, in any case. France should come in second without too much trouble, though their final game against Tonga could be interesting, since if things go as I expect, Tonga could sneak into the quarterfinals if they upset France, and will know it. Japan will beat Canada, and both will get smashed by everyone else. Still, I don't see the Tongan upset happening:
    1. New Zealand
    2. France
    3. Tonga
    4. Japan
    5. Canada

    Pool B

    As good as Argentina was in 2007, they're in kind of a mess at the moment. England will cruise to the top of this group easily, Scotland vs. Argentina should be about the only interesting match of the group. I see Scotland taking it to bump the Pumas out of the knockout places. Georgia will top Romania in the group's pillow fight to avoid last place and these two will be manhandled by the others.
    1. England
    2. Scotland
    3. Argentina
    4. Georgia
    5. Romania

    Pool C

    Like the first two groups, it's difficult to see past one of the teams winning the group. This group's such team is Australia. Ireland may challenge Australia a little in their match but nothing will come of it. In addition, Italy might offer a challenge for Ireland in the last game of the group, but Ireland will escape, perhaps a bit less comfortably than they should. The group's "pillow fight" should actually be an interesting game, and I see the developing Americans coming out on top of Russia in a hard-fought, intriguing matchup, though I admit I know very little about Russian rugby. However, nothing will come of it as the Americans and Russians are even more hopeless against the other three teams than the minnows in groups A and B.
    1. Australia
    2. Ireland
    3. Italy
    4. United States
    5. Russia

    Pool D

    This group is the most interesting group by a long shot. South Africa are the favorites to top the group, but have the most difficult draw as the three teams Fiji, Samoa, and Wales will all put up a really fantastic battle against each other. I can see any one of the three winding up in second place, and all three of them have a realistic (but still small) chance to sneak a win against the Springboks. I'm thinking simply because of the scheduling, Wales has the edge in the three-way battle for 2nd place behind the group favorite Springboks. In addition, the Welsh have the strongest team on paper of the three. Also because of scheduling, I see the Fijians slipping the most. Needless to say, Namibia will get obliterated by everyone. Of the four groups, this one is the one I'm the least sure of, so to say.
    1. South Africa
    2. Wales
    3. Samoa
    4. Fiji
    5. Namibia

    Knockout rounds

    Assuming my group stage predictions come true, I would create the following quarterfinals:

    Australia vs. Wales
    England vs. France
    South Africa vs. Ireland
    New Zealand vs. Scotland

    3 of those 4 look like one team would be easily favored over the other, but England vs. France is an interesting match. I won't go against the grain on any of the other three, and in regards to the fourth, while I feel that the French have a slightly stronger team on paper, England will find a way past them, but only just. I would then have the following semi-finals:

    Australia vs. England
    South Africa vs. New Zealand

    The three southern hemisphere teams into the semis along with England. It's pretty standard so far, without too many surprises, even if I've touched on possible surprises from the group stage. However, while hosts New Zealand and Australia would probably be clear favorites to meet in an epic showdown for the ages at Eden Park for the Webb Ellis Cup, I'm going to go against the rub of the green on this one, and say that England would find a way past Australia, the crafty bastards. It's hard to explain, but I just have that gut feeling that if they met in the semi-finals that England would just manage to scrape their way past the Wallabies. In the other one, the Boks may have beaten us 18-5, physically dominating us in Port Elizabeth and us never being in the game, I have two counterpoints. For one, the game is at home, second, we rested half our starters for the Port Elizabeth test anyway. We'll run the Springboks off the park and win by 30 or more points again like we did in our opener.

    And we reach the final, New Zealand vs. England. The pressure will catch up to us in this game, but England will be exhausted from two brutal, difficult wins over the French and Australians. Add some rain that likes to fall on the North Island in late October and we'll get a match that's about as sloppy as 5 year olds chasing a Twinkie. However, the home crowd will be pleased and we'll end up on top in the ugliest final ever. Final score: 9-5.

    Oh, and for the third place match, Australia smashes the stupid Springboks.


    THE END


    Edit: Yes, I'm arrogantly predicting my own team to win. Deal with it.
    Last edited by Coconut Chucker; September 7th, 2011 at 9:41 AM.
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    Cobol74's Avatar
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    Send Argentina to Invercargill for a game
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  3. #23
    Unloved and lacking a title watto's Avatar
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    Boks cannot get any placing at all... Can't stand the rugby they play, don't know what it is, but there's something about it.

    I think you're pretty spot on regarding the group stages and finals, however think that an AU/NZ may perhaps be more likely than a NZ/England final.

    Pool D is going to prove to be the absolute best group in the comp. The islands and Wales will provide fantastic quality rugby with hard fought battles to get to second place in the group.

    EDIT: Don't be surprised if Wales are beaten to that 2nd Pool D spot...
    Last edited by watto; September 7th, 2011 at 9:51 AM.
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  4. #24
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  5. #25
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  6. #26
    Unloved and lacking a title watto's Avatar
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    Frickin not live on fta tv in Aus this game. Would love to be watching it... Is delayed until 9:45 local time...
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  7. #27
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    I would have liked to have won by more but I suppose I really shouldn't ever complain about a bonus point win.

    Tonga played well in the second half, I have to give them credit and respect for that. Hope we're sharper in our next game though, but this result will do for now.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Victoria View Post
    Tonga played well in the second half, I have to give them credit and respect for that. Hope we're sharper in our next game though, but this result will do for now.
    minutes 60-75 were rather hilarious imo. tonga trying the head-through-the-wall approach and all... they actually deserved to score that try just because they tried so hard.
    i was rather disappointed in the all blacks near misses in the second half. somehow after their strong lead they went and got all ego-centered about it and players tried to score for themselves too much and gave away quite a few tries...

  9. #29
    Yes, as in the airport. Heathrow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Victoria View Post
    I would have liked to have won by more but I suppose I really shouldn't ever complain about a bonus point win.

    Tonga played well in the second half, I have to give them credit and respect for that. Hope we're sharper in our next game though, but this result will do for now.
    Have just watched the highlights show on ITV, yeah timezones etc.

    Good start by the All Blacks getting a win at their first match of a home World Cup. Nerves & expectations etc., they played very well, I thought. Still some player decisions to be made, but it is good to have competition for positions.

    The All Blacks look strong to me and contenders.

  10. #30
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    Just finished watching Scotland hold off Romania.

    I have to say, it was a really exciting game to watch, towards the end my heart was behind the Romanians to pull the shock upset. I think finally going behind on the scoreboard woke up the Scots however, as if the try that put Romania ahead actually shifted the momentum back in their favor. Romania had a brief spell late while they were down by 5 and some hope crept back in, but then Scotland slammed the door on them.

    Romania's scrum was just... one of the most powerful pushes I've seen lately. The way they destroyed Scotland for their try that put them ahead was just amazing. They'll be disappointed they let a chance slip away at a shocking defeat of Scotland, but the Romanians can be proud of how they played today. Their forwards were pretty impressive all game in general, but their backs looked like schoolboys.
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  11. #31
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    Yeah, but get this: 6 minutes to go, Romania leads, their most prevalent player gets pulled, 3 minutes later, Scotland has scored two tries. Coincidence?
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  12. #32
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    Waiting for the inevitable All Blacks choke...
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  13. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by stevanford1 View Post
    Waiting for the inevitable All Blacks choke...
    Waiting for the inevitable Wallabies getting knocked out by an unvfavored England team...
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  14. #34
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    Surprised at the England v Argentina result. looked to be going one way.

    ITV also apologising for the language of one of the England players at the end of the match. He called one of the Argentina players a "fucking prick" which was picked up by the mics. The ITV people quickly condemning his language.
    Why? its live, its a hot tempered match. sparks will fly and you can't control what the players say. ITV should have just apologised at best for broadcasting it but frankly condemning it is useless.
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  15. #35
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    Well, it's been a story of the underdogs performing admirably (despite losing in the end anyway).

    Romania and Japan had legitimate chances to pull off what would have been a really big upset, but in the end weren't able to finish the job. The atmosphere at the Japan vs. France match was pretty intense. For quite some time the French looked shell shocked and on the brink of imploding. I was just starting to believe in the Cherry Blossoms as they put the French try line under siege yet again trailing by 4 points... then I think France woke up, because once nothing came of that attack they brought everyone back to reality pretty quickly. Impressive stuff. As for Namibia, they can be proud of how they played against Fiji. In the end 49-25 wasn't all too close but this is the same team who got annihilated by Australia 142-0 just eight years ago. Was much better stuff from them, especially in the second half when they probably decided that an upset wasn't exactly on the cards in anymore and they opened their game up.

    Argentina vs. England was one of the ugliest matches I've watched recently. Also, how do the kickers go 5 for 16 on penalties combined in an INDOOR stadium? Part of me wanted to see Argentina win it, but England probably deserved the win in the end.
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  16. #36
    tezgm99's Avatar
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    I missed the SA v Wales game (know the result however) but TSN are showing it again either tonight or tomorrow night so I shall catch it then
    Last edited by tezgm99; September 12th, 2011 at 11:23 PM. Reason: because I can, lol
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  17. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by tezgm99 View Post
    I missed the SA v Wales game (know the result however) but TSN are showing it again either tonight or tomorrow night so I shall catch it then
    Was a really good game, in terms of how close it stayed all game. South Africa weren't exactly sharp though.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Victoria View Post
    Was a really good game, in terms of how close it stayed all game. South Africa weren't exactly sharp though.
    that doesn't mean a whole lot these days; remember that the boks destroyed England in the round robins in 2007 but only scraped home in the final
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  19. #39
    Not A Dude Coconut Chucker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tezgm99 View Post
    that doesn't mean a whole lot these days; remember that the boks destroyed England in the round robins in 2007 but only scraped home in the final
    But in the group stage you have statements to make and a bonus point to care about.

    In the final, they had a trophy to win; 15-6 was more than enough the way England were playing, so they didn't take any risks.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Victoria View Post
    But in the group stage you have statements to make and a bonus point to care about.

    In the final, they had a trophy to win; 15-6 was more than enough the way England were playing, so they didn't take any risks.
    I was referring to the fact that England made the final despite getting thrashed....round robin means nothing so long as you go through.
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