Rugby World Cup 2019 : The 9th edition of the Rugby World Cup is undoubtedly the marquee event in next year’s calendar for rugby aficionados and as the first ball hits the air come 2019 in Japan, the sport is sure to catch the world’s eye with exhilarating performances and the natural charisma of the sport.
This time, Japan is the venue for the premier rugby showcase , as set to host the 10 day event with Asia’s heavyweights stacked against each other in what is guaranteed to exhibit some scintillating performances among the 6 teams participating in this elite face off. With this year’s centrepiece rugbying event, the World Cup in Japan less than a year away , this may also prove to be the competition that could turn out to be the reckoning for the National Rugby teams of the various competing nations as they would be raring to be the highest ranked team in the competition.
The competition for the World Cup as of now is made up of Japan, USA, Australia, New Zealand, England ,France, Ireland, Fiji, Georgia, Italy, Namibia, Samoa , South Africa, Uruguay, Wales, Tonga, Russia and Scotland who will compete in week after week of adrenaline pumping matches to come through as the best. The qualified teams have been divided into pools ranging from A to D with the preliminary round of matches being based of these pools. Now let’s take a quick overview of the favourite teams in each pool.
Rugby World Cup 2019 Teams
Japan Rugby Team
The 9th edition hosts seem to be one of the underdogs of the competition but be surprised if they manage to spring an upset or two on their home turf.
Previous best :Pool Stage
World Ranking: 11
Australia Rugby Team
The 2015 finalists also happen to a force to be reckoned with this year as they look they add to the success they have had in recent years.
Previous best: Winners 1999
England Rugby Team
England have remained a staple of World competitions but in the case of rugby they have remained perennial underachievers , and this time around, they look to change it this time around with a well balanced team.
Previous best : Winners 2003
World Ranking : 4
Argentina Rugby Team
Argentina have a solid squad and have been in red hot form coming into the World Cup. But they have failed to replicate their fine international form in the previous editions.
Previous Best : Semi-finals 2015
World Ranking : 9
New Zealand Rugby Team
The most successful World Cup team also happens to the best documented, with recent success compounding their national popularity, and the team have gained a foothold and now, the only way is up for the defending champions.
Previous Best: Winners 2015
World Ranking :1
South Africa Rugby Team
Two-time winners South Africa will be looking to unshackle themselves from the chains of historical unprecedented victories to usher in a new era of boldness. This team looks ready for any challenge.
Previous Best: Winners 2007
World Ranking : 5
Ireland Rugby Team
The Irish National side has always been at the forefront of ruby action that effectively exhilarates the crowd. Although they don’t have the silverware in the competition to throw their weight around, they will expect things to change this year.
Previous Best: Quarterfinals 2015,2011,2003
World Ranking: 2
Wales Rugby Team
This is yet another side looking for another shot at redemption and the trophy that comes with it as these rugby behemoths are looking to convert their impressive form towards unprecedented national success.
Previous Best: Semi-finals 2011,1987
World Ranking: 3
As the New Zealand n National team play the hosts Japan in what will be an interesting fixture in the opening fixture, the world’s no.1 ranking side will be a clear favourite despite Japan far from being a pushover , as they will be gunning for an upset that would rattle the competition. New Zealand has been massively dominant in the competition as they are looking to bag a fourth title in only the 9th edition of the competition and this would only further the incentives for the other teams to stake their claim on the prize.
All teams in each pool will face each other before the pool stage ends as the competition then begins its knockout phase with the final to be played on a date not yet decided along with the match to decide third and fourth places. As all the fixtures have been published, a particularly enticing couple of fixtures for hockey aficionados will be New Zealand vs the 7th ranked Australian team and also the perennially compelling face off versus South Africa. On setting the 9th edition of the competition in Japan , the director for the international rugby federation remarked he was delighted by the enthusiasm shown by the Japanese side as well as the body towards hosting this competition and the efforts being taken by them to become a leading rugby nation. As the start of the biennial event inches ever closer, it is certain that this edition of the competition will provide compelling end to end action of the highest order.
As far as the teams go, New Zealand will be facing their stiffest competition from South Africa although neighbours Australia , who are just short of them for the most trophies in the competition with 2 each and the winner of this edition also takes home bragging rights which in sport, supersedes almost everything. But the competition is far from being a two horse race as powerhouses Argentina, England and an exciting Japan are looking to end the Oceanic dominance , with Japan fresh from a qualifying triumph that bolstered their credentials in the competition.
The competition is sure to enthral the aficionado as well as the casual watcher with it’s potent concoction of enticing duels and fervour. Apart from it’s standalone value, it serves as the perfect gateway competition for you to enter the exciting world of Rugby for the Rugby World Cup at the end of the year.