December 9, 2023

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New Zealand and South Africa go for a fourth Webb Ellis

New Zealand and South Africa go for a fourth Webb Ellis

New Zealand and South Africa are playing in the World Cup final. The All Blacks beat Argentina 6-44, while the Springboks at least did it and came back – 15-16 – against England, a match that dominated throughout the tournament. The final will be played on Saturday while the Pumas and England will play for bronze on Friday.

©World Rugby

Argentina 6 – 44 New Zealand

The All Blacks didn’t give Las Pumas a chance and they secured their place in the Grand Final thanks to the 7 points they achieved. Will Jordan – with 3 tries – led the Kiwi attack. Jordy Barrett, Aaron Smith and two more from Shannon Frizzell in the third completed the scoring. Argentina’s dominance in the opening minutes was to no avail as they were outplayed in all aspects of the game.

Argentina came out with a boss and stopped the All Blacks on their own. In fact, Boffelli opened the scoring with a foot strike. But New Zealand were in control of the contest and, as best they could, they counter-attacked with two straight hits to send their rivals to the canvas for the first time, with tries from Will Jordan and Jordy Barrett. Emiliano Boffelli was cut in the leg, but the dynamic of the match had changed. Before the break, New Zealand scored again with Richie Moinga’s win and a try from Shannon Frizzell to make the score 6-20 at the break.

©World Rugby

Second half is clear black. Aaron Smith opened the scoring early in the second half and Shannon Frizzell set up his second personal best just before the first 10 minutes. The match was decided but the All Blacks didn’t stop the engine. Jordan scored two more tries – and it would have been 3 had Mo’nka been more generous – the final 6-44. The All Black wing joins the 8 club: Xavia, Lomu and havana, World Cup Top Scorers

©World Rugby

England 15-16 South Africa

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England did everything they could to secure a place in the final, but the world champions changed their praetorian guards – Pollard, Le Roux and de Klerk – and their scrum game. XV De la Rosa kept the Springboks on the ropes with their dominating high ground fighting and a good game. The plan didn’t go well for the three-time champions and they changed the script of the game to mount a comeback in finals-worthy extremism.

Owen Farrell led the game with his feet in the first half. The English flyhalf dispatched 3 shots to Manny Lipok’s, but a sense of English dominance led the South African bench to take one of the first decisions to change the match. Jack Ninaber introduced Handre Pollard to restore the tempo of the match. At halftime the score was 12-6.

©World Rugby

The match was still in the hands of the English, and when two old gladiators entered Pollard joined them. Faf de Klerk and Willy Le Roux entered the game at the back. After a while comes the ending that really changes the game. South Africa renewed their lead with the entry of RG Snyman, Kwagga Smith, Deon Fourie and – above all – Ox Nche. Despite the changes, Farrell passed a drop to keep a safe distance. Something had to change, and boy did it. The Springboks changed the game with their superiority in the scrum. In fact, it intensified shortly after with the entry of Vincent Koch. With 10 minutes remaining, RG Snyman scored the only try before Pollard hit the winning shot in the 78th minute.

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South Africa and New Zealand play in the finals in search of their fourth Webb Ellis.