All Blacks vs Springboks: Hansen hits out at Erasmus

Friday, 20 Sep, 2019

Many are billing Saturday as the best day for rugby in the whole tournament with definitive pool games aplenty.

Although the All Blacks have slipped behind Ireland in the world rankings, Erasmus said their dominance over the past decade had earned them credit with match officials.

"He's trying to put pressure on referees externally and they're under enough pressure already". We have done it ourselves.

This is the fifth meeting between the teams at a World Cup with the Springboks winning the 1995 final and 1999 bronze medal match, while New Zealand took the 2003 quarter-final and 2015 semi-final.

"I don't know if it's to slow them (Fiji) down", he said.

England star Owen Farrell dressed as a Samurai for England's Rugby World Cup promo.

Also on the roster of Olympians is New Zealand's Rugby World Cup victor Sonny Bill Williams, and All Blacks teammate Reiko Ione who was named World Rugby Breakthrough Player of the Year in 2017. They have a tough game against Georgia in 5 days but it's going to be tough with a completely new coach as Gatland's right-hand man.

- Pocock has won 29 turnovers at the Rugby World Cup, more than any other player in the history of the competition.

"Every person knows the job they have to do and I'm sure they'll be looking forward with excitement and anticipation to the challenge on Saturday. Having said that, we'll place a few bets, and see what happens", says Davies.

Fiji, now ranked 9th in the World Rugby rankings, come into the tournament having shown they can take on the established teams with a shock 21-14 victory over France past year.

"We saw that in the Bledisloe Cup".

The Wallabies beat New Zealand in Perth in August and have been set a target of making the final once again by Rugby Australia chief executive Raelene Castle. I think it is (the) Japanese who should feel anxiety as hosts. The 31 guys who go to the Rugby World Cup will be in form and the best, people who say there are quota players are talking twak. And the All Blacks will want to show the world what they can do, after some recent results have gone against them.

"We are working on four-year cycles and throwing away the coach, so there's no consistency with a whole new management structure every four years", Claassen said.

He has been part of Gatland's highly-successful coaching team since 2008, and is now back in Wales.

"For the last three years, we have been in the top four of the world, we haven't dipped below that, I don't think, at any stage". He is one of our leaders and controls the game.

"It's not the ideal situation but what we've done is rolled our sleeves up a little bit and just got on with it".

The 18 Olympians have all successfully made the switch from playing sevens at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games to be selected for Rugby World Cup 2019, the showpiece event in the 15s game. As a defence coach you obviously like a good contest for possession. "All we can ask for is a fair contest at the breakdowns an if we get that we will be happy".