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    (Original post by Chris22)
    Shocked that the USA are on the verge of qualification, fantastic for them, but Wales have had a very disappointing tournament. Scotland going well too, Group C is shaping up nicely, one game to go (two for Tonga), and all three teams could still qualify to have a crack at New Zealand (I think?)
    USA have been the revelation of the World Cup so far, and have certainly shown the result against France was no fluke. If the Cook Islands don't win tonight then USA will win Group D and secure a quarter-final against what seems certain to be Australia

    You're right regards Group C in that all three teams can qualify but Tonga need at least a draw tonight and then a good win against Italy to qualify. A win for them tonight would leave all to play for, but qualification is out of their hands.


    Off to my first match on Friday for New Zealand v Papua New Guinea
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    Victory for Scotland tonight 22-8 over the USA taking them onto a points difference of +16. Tonga can now no longer reach the quarter-finals whereas any victory for Italy (who themselves have a +16 points difference) would mean they will qualify at Scotland's expense.
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    (Original post by Matthew_Lowson)
    Victory for Scotland tonight 22-8 over the USA taking them onto a points difference of +16. Tonga can now no longer reach the quarter-finals whereas any victory for Italy (who themselves have a +16 points difference) would mean they will qualify at Scotland's expense.
    I was there tonight! Scotland played better generally, a better defence and wildly superior kicking game.
    Handbags quite a few times, USA's Number 10 absolutely gagging for a punch-up!
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    Just got in from New Zealand v Papua New Guinea, my first RL Match live. Enjoyable game, PNG seemed to relax in the second half knowing that from 40-0 down their World Cup was over. Atmosphere inside the ground when they scored fantastic.
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    Using AirPlay for the England match so we can watch the game with Vossy commentary
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    Five down, nine to go.
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    Cook Islands close on their World Cup with their first ever win at a RL World Cup.

    I can understand why Napolitano is frustrated with the format, However I do feel that the tournament needs the format as it is to make it competitive. The last World Cup here in 2000 had a conventional format, i.e. Four Groups of Four with the Top Two in each qualifying for the knock-outs and was a total flop with completely one sided matches in the Group stages. Feel very sorry for Scotland though if they do go out with five points from three matches.

    It would have worked much better if they had just 12 teams and had two from Group C to make up the quarter-finals or scored Group C and D together in a group of six with 2 to go through
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    We've got our eight quarter-finalists
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    Samoa complete the group stage with a 22-6 win over France. Quarter-final line up now confirmed

    No midweek matches now for the remainder of the tournament'

    NEW ZEALAND v SCOTLAND - on Friday at Headingley
    AUSTRALIA v USA on Saturday afternoon at Wrexham
    ENGLAND v FRANCE on Saturday night at the DW Stadium
    SAMOA v FIJI - on Sunday at the Halliwell Jones

    What do we reckon the Semi-Final line ups will be?


    Just seven matches to go now
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    Australia and New Zealand the first teams through to wembley
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    England vs NZ next week should be a cracker. NZ are so strong and skilful, but from what I've seen do make some errors, if we are to progress, we need to capitalise on their mistakes. They should be the favourites, but in front of hopefully a big Wembley crowd, England do have a chance to get the job done!
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    (Original post by Chris22)
    England vs NZ next week should be a cracker. NZ are so strong and skilful, but from what I've seen do make some errors, if we are to progress, we need to capitalise on their mistakes. They should be the favourites, but in front of hopefully a big Wembley crowd, England do have a chance to get the job done!
    I fancy England's chances in this Semi-Final a lot more than the 2008 Semi-Final (but I think England were never in the hunt in that World Cup at all). I think heavy rain on Saturday morning should make it fun, particularly with SBW in the try area.

    New Zealand haven't had a test in this World Cup. Samoa gave them a worry but the game was out of sight by then anyways. The fact England have been tested could well be of an advantage to them


    Thoughts on the World Cup so far?
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    (Original post by Matthew_Lowson)
    I fancy England's chances in this Semi-Final a lot more than the 2008 Semi-Final (but I think England were never in the hunt in that World Cup at all). I think heavy rain on Saturday morning should make it fun, particularly with SBW in the try area.

    New Zealand haven't had a test in this World Cup. Samoa gave them a worry but the game was out of sight by then anyways. The fact England have been tested could well be of an advantage to them


    Thoughts on the World Cup so far?
    Agreed about the 2008 point, we seem far better prepared than we did then. This will be New Zealand's first game against a big nation, but they have big game players who will be able to handle the pressure. If England play to their best they can win, but we need to be at our best.

    The whole tournament has surpassed my expectations. Great to see internationals played in full stadiums. The passion of the players, particularly the Fijians has been a highlight. I've enjoyed the games between 'smaller' nations, which provided some great entertainment and close finishes. The format too was balanced well, which didn't overdo the 'supergroup' format of 2008 and gave all 14 teams a chance of qualifying to play against the bigger nations.

    The challenge now is to capitalise on the success of the tournament, build a regular international schedule to get more teams at a higher standard.
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    Rangi Chase dropped for the New Zealand game.

    Maybe it's because he's not English and is actually from New Zealand?
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    (Original post by TRS-T)
    Rangi Chase dropped for the New Zealand game.

    Maybe it's because he's not English and is actually from New Zealand?
    I'd put it more down to the fact that he tries too hard to do fancy things that his tricks end up detrimental, for the most part...
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    Although I think it's right to drop Chase, McNamara should have done it for the QF. Widdop has barely played for months and has never played a full match alongside Sinfield. It's a risk, but I think it's the right call.

    Enormous game for England tomorrow, it's going to be close, but hopefully we can do it.
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    I'm fed up of losing to New Zealand in rugby :mad:

    They are pissing me off.

    I wish that they had qualified for the World Cup in Brazil next summer so that we could ****ing smash them in our primary sport
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    (Original post by TRS-T)
    I'm fed up of losing to New Zealand in rugby :mad:

    They are pissing me off.

    I wish that they had qualified for the World Cup in Brazil next summer so that we could ****ing smash them in our primary sport
    It was a bad mistake to give away the penalty to be honest, should've just stayed strong and mainted a wall until the end of their set (easier said than done though I suppose, especially with you got the All Blacks charging at you wave after wave). The better team lost though however, NZ's try before half time was:coma:
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    Great game to watch at Wembley so disappointing as regards the en

    Looking forward to the final now, Now England are out I'm hoping New Zealand go on and defend the title
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    One of the best games I've seen in a very long time yesterday. The effort, the drama and commitment of our players was first class. I wouldn't swap James Graham and Sam Burgess for any other front rowers in the world, they are absolute class. We were so close, and I was far more disappointed than I've ever been at an international defeat (and there have been plenty)!

    We came so close, shame there might not be any big international competitions in the UK until 2016. I'd like to see plans for the Australia tour reversed, with them coming over here.

    Going to be a great final, it has to go some way to beating yesterdays match, but should be good regardless.
 
 
 
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