22 September 2015

RWC 2015 - Day 3

Another exciting day of Rugby, and although the results were much more predictable than Saturday's, there are still some big implications for the rest of the tournament.

Match 6: Samoa v USA (25-16)
Samoa showed that they're going to be a competitor in this group.  Their direct and effective play will challenge both Japan and Scotland.  One highlight was a great right-to-left move at an attacking scrum that put Tim Nanai-Williams over in the corner, on the end of a grubber kick by Tusi Pisi. 

Match 7: Wales v Uruguay (54-9)

Wales won easily but at a big cost in terms of apparent injuries: Corey Allen is out of the squad with a torn hamstring, after scoring a hat-trick of tries.  Liam Williams, Samson Lee, Dan Lydiate, Aaron Jarvis and Paul James all had to leave the field. 

Well-managed match, which didn't become a penalty-fest in spite of the differences in skill levels between the sides.  Uruguay kept going until the end, great courage and spirit. 

Match 8: New Zealand v Argentina (26-16)

The crowd's booing of Richie McCaw aside, there was little to disappoint in this great clash between Southern Hemisphere sides.  Off the field - well, the service at the bars could have been a little better organised; how long can it take to take the tops off four plastic bottles of Heineken and exchange the result for a £20 note?  Someone told me afterwards that Murphy's stout was also available, but no other beers. 

Argentina played themselves to a standstill after leading for much of the game.  All Blacks' attack was very organised and patient.  They won't care that they didn't score a bonus point - all they need to do is win their matches, and no-one else in the group is likely to threaten that aim.

Wembley was brilliant, and the crowd was a record for a RWC pool match, almost 90,000.  England2015 and Transport for London were very well organised to help us get away in good time.  My own experience was this: we reached the back of the queue, 250 metres from the station at 18:55, and were on the (right) train at 19:17, at Waterloo and enjoying a beer (not Heineken) at 19:45.   

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