The boys have now been separated from the men in the Rugby World Cup. The tournament, hosted in Japan, has seen several surprise results, winners and happenings. And the fun is set to continue this weekend with the tournament getting even more competitive.
With the group stage done and dusted, all is now set for the knockout stages of the competition. Starting with the quarter-final games, it’s time for teams to go big or go home!
Eight of the 20 teams that started the competition have made it to this stage of the tournament – the top two teams from each of the four groups. Let’s take a closer look at these eight teams:
The host nation has taken full advantage of their home crowd. They’re the only side that won all of their Group A games, scoring over 25 points in three of those four games. Playing on home turn makes them dangerous for any side that they’ll be up against.
Can the Springboks defeat the Japanese team on home soil?
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With 121 points scored in four games, the Irish teams outscored all their group A opponents. They also conceded the least amount of points in the group. However, their loss to Japan meant they had to settle for second place in the group.
Favorites to win the tournament, the group stage was an easy breeze for the ‘All Blacks.’ Their 71 – 9 win over Namibia was one of the largest score-lines of the tournament. Their ruthlessness and experience is what makes them one of the favorites to go all the way.
They are the only remaining African side in the tournament. Their first game ended in a defense to eventual group winners, New Zealand. However, they bounced back from that loss, winning all of their remaining games.
They were the best side defensively in the group stages. The 20 points they conceded was the least any side could manage in the group stages. And that makes them a solid opposition for Australia to try and conquer.
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Of the eight teams that qualified out of the different groups, France was the lowest-scoring side. The 79 points they scored was one of the lowest recorded by any side in the tournament.
The Welsh were able to top Group D because they won all their four games. They were also the joint-third highest scoring side in the group stage.
Despite scoring the same points as Wales and conceding just one point less, the Australian could only manage to finish in second place. This was due to their 29 – 25 loss to Wales.
Now that you know these eight teams better, which of them do you think can make it to the Semi-finals of the tournament? Leave us your comments and share your thoughts with us.