2019 Rugby World Cup: Day 1 & 2 Scores & Standings

The 2019 Rugby World Cup kicked off without any upsets nor fabulous performances, but quite a few intriguing matches. Japan did just about enough against Russia, New Zealand staved off South Africa, Australia put a slow start behind them against Fiji, and France almost let a comfortable lead slip away against Argentina. Almost.

Pool A

Japan – Russia: 30-10

Not a brilliant performance by the hosts, but the lack of fitness for this level of Rugby on the Russian side made the difference in the end. Kotaro Matsushima scored a hat-trick of tries to help the Japanese side get a much-needed bonus point. However, this type of sloppiness early on will surely not be enough against Scotland and Ireland. Perhaps not Samoa as well. 

Group Table

Team
PldWDLTFPFPA+/−BPPts
 Japan110043010+2015
 Ireland0000000+000
 Scotland0000000+000
 Samoa0000000+000
 Russia100111030–2000

Pool B

New Zealand – South Africa: 23-13

A “true” final ended up going the All Blacks way. All the confidence and dominance from the Springboks’ Rugby Championship triumphs weren’t enough this time. South Africa started well, but at the first sign of mistakes the All Blacks soared for two quick tries by George Bridge and Scott Barrett, enabling them to keep control for the rest of the match. A Pieter-Steph du Toit try followed by Handre Pollard’s drop goal put some pressure on the All Blacks. However, Richard Mo’unga was clinical with his kicking, enough to fend off a comeback attempt.

Group Table

Team
PldWDLTFPFPA+/−BPPts
 New Zealand110022313+1004
 Italy0000000+000
 Namibia0000000+000
 Canada0000000+000
 South Africa100111323-1000

Pool C

Gael Fickou of France
Image source

France – Argentina: 23-21

England should be happy with this one. Not with the result, but the inconsistency both sides showed in a match eventually decided by a 69th minute drop goal by  Camille Lopez. France looked fabulous through the first half, but the Pumas’ toughness and relentless pressure turned the tides in the second half. It wasn’t enough, and the 1 point for making it a close match in the end  isn’t going to be much consolation if they don’t beat England.

Group Table

Team
PldWDLTFPFPA+/−BPPts
 France110022321+204
 Argentina100122123–211
 England0000000+000
 United States0000000+000
 Tonga0000000+000

Pool D

Australia – Fiji: 39-21

Fiji always start off running and the Wallabies weren’t prepared. But in classic Fijian fashion, the unforced errors began, and Australia took over the match. Tolu Latu scored a couple of tries en route to claim player of the match. He’s also en route to become the undisputed best prop in the world with more of these performances. While Australia didn’t have as many good minutes in this match as they hoped for, turning a slightly complicated situation into a comfortable victory.

Group Table

Team
PldWDLTFPFPA+/−BPPts
 Australia110063921+1815
 Wales0000000+000
 Georgia0000000+000
 Uruguay0000000+000
 Fiji100122139–1800

Day 3 Matches:

Ireland vs Scotland (Group A)

Italy vs Namibia (Group B)

England vs Tonga (Group C)

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