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‘We performed desperately’: fans review the Rugby World Cup

first_imgTopics ScotlandWe didn’t turn up against Ireland, which has been a theme. But then we did unbelievably professional jobs against Russia and Samoa. Nilling anyone is impressive, but to do it twice even more so. The final group fixture against Japan is one of the better games I’ve witnessed. I have no complaints; they were extraordinary. Feargus Dunlop Twitter Rugby World Cup 2019 Rugby World Cup Twitter South AfricaThe Springboks exceeded everybody’s expectations. Having lost to New Zealand early on, I didn’t expect us to win the tournament a few weeks later! But winning the final by 20 points was very convincing. Hans Van LeeuwenWalesConsidering an ultimately crippling injury list, Wales did very well to reach the semi-finals and finish in fourth place overall. We had realistic aspirations to become world champions but, with so many leading players either sidelined or carrying injuries, this was a fine achievement. We got within touching distance of the final in losing narrowly to South Africa but, as demonstrated by the bronze medal play-off, that would have been one game too far. Simon Hodgson Read more Share on WhatsApp ArgentinaThe Pumas didn’t do as well as I had hoped. We knew the most important game was the one against France and we couldn’t find the win, even though it was close. We seemed a bit off-colour but can leave with our heads held high as the future of Argentinian rugby is looking better than ever. Maxi HellbergAustraliaWe performed as expected. We’re mid-ranked internationally and played that way. The challenge for Australia rugby is to attract, develop and retain talent through efficient and effective administration. Changing coaches is merely tinkering and will not bring long-term improvements. The game has been in decline for over a decade.I attended 10 matches at the World Cup. Being in the crowd when Japan defeated Scotland was the most joyous part of the tournament – plus the warmth, hospitality and administrative excellence of the Japanese people. Gary W StaintonCanadaThey did what I expected. The Namibia game couldn’t be played because of the weather and I’m glad, because we might have lost that too. Credit to all the players who took the time out of their lives to participate and put in a full effort. But something needs to change at the top management levels, because the program has been going backwards for the last few decades. It’s not the 1990s anymore and they need to stop acting like it is and living on past glories. Figure it out. Greg PetrieEnglandThere’s no way to fully mask the disappointment I’m feeling but, to be honest, barring that last final step, we had an amazing World Cup. We were immense across the field as we beat Australia then New Zealand convincingly. Every single one of the players deserves credit but Maro Itoje, Kyle Sinckler and Tom Curry were incredible throughout. Had Sinckler not gone off in the final we might have done better, but you can’t win them all. Huge congratulations to South Africa, who were deserved winners. Nat Maxfield Share on Facebook Support The Guardian New Zealand prop Nepo Laulala leaves the World Cup with a bronze medal. Photograph: Charly Triballeau/AFP via Getty Images Read more Facebook Share on LinkedIn Since you’re here… Reuse this content … we have a small favour to ask. More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many new organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism, to maintain our openness and to protect our precious independence. Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Owen Farrell shares some rousing words with his England teammates during their semi-final against New Zealand. Photograph: David Ramos/World Rugby via Getty Images Rugby World Cup awards: the best player, the best match – our verdicts Share on Pinterest Pinterest New ZealandIt’s hard to feel too upset about the outcome of our tournament. The New Zealand rugby public have chilled out a bit over the last eight years. We have had such a positive, attack-minded approach under Steve Hansen that is brilliant when it works, but prone to dramatic collapses when teams play intelligent defensive rugby against us. In a way, seeing the devastation etched on the English players’ faces after their defeat in the final, it’s nicer to win the bronze final, ending the tournament on a high, than to lose the final.I’m optimistic for the future. There is a heap of young talent, some of whom didn’t even make the squad. A revitalised Rugby Championship including Japan and Fiji will be for all teams involved, and we are at our best when South Africa are at their strongest too. Their dominance in 2007 and 2009 made us take our rugby to a new level. Now the same will have to happen. Who will get to four World Cups first? Tim Smith Rugby union Japan 2019 might be the moment rugby union glimpsed a more fulfilling future Share on Twitter Share via Email features GeorgiaWe didn’t perform as well as I had hoped. I thought this could have been our breakthrough year but, while our pack had its moments, it didn’t manage to dominate to its full capability. I still want to see the World Cup being hosted by Georgia one day! Georgi DibrilisiIrelandWe performed desperately, given the high levels of expectations and performances in 2018. The team’s gameplan was overly regimented, too reliant on brute force, hostile to off-loading, and prevented the players from taking any kind of risks or engaging in unstructured play. Also, too many out-of-form players were chosen instead of others who were conspicuously playing better but not trusted by management.The end against New Zealand was shambolic and, given what was at stake, rather shameful. Failure to ever get beyond the quarter-finals is a national sporting embarrassment. My favourite moment of the tournament was the tearful reaction of Uruguayan captain, Juan Manuel Gaminara, at the end of his team’s extraordinary win over Fiji. Their stunning victory was joyful to behold. Ger DownesItalyWe weren’t that bad. I didn’t expect us to reach the quarter-finals given we were drawn against New Zealand and South Africa in our pool. Italy rugby fans had stopped caring by the time the last game was called off due to the weather. 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