22 September 2015
RWC 2015 - Day 3
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.