All about New Zealand (Pool A)

Emmanuel LANGELLIER, Media365, published on Wednesday August 23, 2023 at 08:39

Find everything you need to know about New Zealand, which will participate in its 10th World Cup.

The most successful nation in the history of rugby, New Zealand remains the benchmark for the discipline and will aim for a 4th world title in France in 2023 after its crowns in 1987, 2011 and 2015. The second nation in the world ranking of July 31 is no longer quite what it used to be but you must always be wary of the famous All Blacks who have won 88% of the World Cup (only 7 defeats in 56 games) and have only missed the last four once (quarters in 2007, loss against France).

All Blacks qualification route

The Blacks qualified directly for the 2023 World Cup thanks to their journey at the 2019 World Cup. In Japan 4 years ago, they increased their record of consecutive victories in the planetary event to 18 before falling in the semi-finals against England (7-19). Previously, they had finished top of Pool B with 16 points (3 wins, a draw due to the canceled match against Italy due to Typhoon Hagibis) ahead of South Africa, Italy, Namibia and Canada and crushed Ireland (46-14) in the quarterfinals.

Favorite of the group with France

Capital nation of the game, New Zealand is part of the toughest group of the 2023 World Cup along with the team of France, Italy, Uruguay and Namibia in pool A. Not enough to disturb the All Blacks who should finish in the first two and play first place with the Blues. An XV of France that they will face at the Stade de France in the opening match on September 8 (9:00 p.m.) before meeting Namibia on September 15 (9:00 p.m.), Italy on September 29 (9:00 p.m.) and the Uruguay on October 5 (9:00 p.m.).

Players to follow

New Zealand will be taken to France by captain Sam Cane. The third line of the Chiefs will play at 31 his 3rd World Cup in a row and will seek a 2nd coronation after 2015. In an attempt to bring the Blacks back to the roof of the world, the flanker will be accompanied by Aaron Smith, the star of the team. and half iconic scrum. At 34, “Nugget” will end a decade in the black jersey after having revolutionized his position. It will also be necessary to closely watch Brodie Retallick (32 years old), able to run very quickly despite his size of 2 meters and the only second line to have been named best player in the world in 2014 by World Rugby, but also the youngest Caleb Clarke ( 24), winger with phenomenal speed, and fly-half and fullback Beauden Barrett (32).

Coach: Ian Foster

At 58, Ian Foster will lead New Zealand one last time at the 2023 World Cup as he already knows he will be replaced after the competition (by Scott Robertson). He was named behind the 2019 World Cup after having been in charge of the backs between 2012 and 2019. The former opener had been in difficulty during the summer of 2022 following the three defeats conceded at home against Ireland (twice) and Argentina.

World Cup history

– 2019: 3rd
– 2015: winner
– 2011: winner
– 2007: quarter-final
– 2003: 3rd
– 1999: 4th
– 1995: 2nd
– 1991: 3rd
– 1987: winner

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