World Cup 2023 Fixtures

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Feb 13, 2023, 00:09

Pool B is suddenly looking much harder than the other ones. 
Also, a very good rugby team is not going to get through the pool stages...

Also, 2 teams out of the best 4 in the world will be knocked out in or before the quarters. (France, Ireland, All Blacks, South Africa)

The quarters are going to be very lopsided. Based on the current form, the teams in Pool A & B are much better than C &D

Pool A & B have to play against each other in the quarters and semis.

Teams in Pool C and D could get a very easy run to the final, meaning only one very difficult game. 
It could mean some teams peak before the final and have nothing in the tank. 
Like England in the 2019 world cup, they committed too much before the final, and played better in their semi against the All Blacks. 

The formats have resulted in a lot of luck in the past with these draws.
South Africa's draw in 2007 was very easy, playing Argentina in the semi-final. 

Pool A:

Pool B:

Pool C:

Pool D:


Sun 15 Oct Winner Pool A v Runner-up Pool B 

Sat 14 Oct Winner Pool B v Runner-up Pool A 

Sat 14 Oct Winner Pool C v Runner-up Pool D 

Sun 15 Oct Winner Pool D v Runner-up Pool C 

Let's assume France and All Blacks get through Pool A
1. France
2. All Blacks

Let's assume Ireland and the Boks get through Pool B
1. Ireland
2. South Africa

That means:
France would play South Africa in the quarters
Ireland would play the All Blacks in the quarters. 

On current form, these are the 4 best teams in the world... and 2 of them have to get knocked out in the quarters...
2 of the quarterfinals are potentially more difficult than the final... (a C/D pool team)
The semi is the winner of these 2 games, which again on current form is more difficult than the final.

South Africa having to play the All Blacks or France is a very difficult quarter-final...
If by chance the Boks did win their quarter-final, they would have to play the other team in the semi.
A very difficult path to the final...
I can't see the Boks getting to the final, but it will be just as hard for Ireland to get to the final. 
Also, for France, and All Blacks (even though they have an easier opening round).

Getting to the final for the best 4 teams is almost certainly harder than actually winning the final


Fri 20 Oct Winner Quarter-final 1 v Winner Quarter-final 2 

Sat 21 Oct Winner Quarter-final 3 v Winner Quarter-final 4 

Feb 13, 2023, 01:25

The Boks certainly have it tough even in the first round having to play Ireland and a now in-form Scotland.

I'd expect the Boks to get through,  but they'll have to be right on their game in both those fixtures which will add further pressure come QF time!

Feb 13, 2023, 02:19

It could be frustrating for Ireland. For the 1st time, they are going into the world cup as a favourite - and they could easily get knocked out in the quarters. 

France, who go in as favourites and have a home-ground advantage, could easily get knocked out in the quarters. 

The All Blacks could go out in the quarters, perhaps for the 1st time. (or 2nd time?)

The Boks could get knocked out in the group stages for the 1st time. 

England or Australia could make the final, and they have not been good teams in ages. 
Wales is currently hopeless and could get into the semi, so could Japan or Argentina. 

The draw is ridiculous...

Feb 13, 2023, 03:01


Thanks for the info.   However, you are wrong about the never before - you apparently forgot about the "first time ever".     Go back to 2011 WC and see how really poor SA was that year. 

2007 was another freak year - SA never playing the AB's or Australia.    It was indeed a lucky break for a very average Springbok side that went through the WC series after losing against the AB's in the RC that year by 33-6.  Weird results - like SA losing against  Japan in 2015 - can happen again in the upcoming WC series.    

Going into the 2019 WC SA was not the favorites to win the WC in Japan.   Yet they lost agaaist the AB's in the group stages and went on to win the WC in 2019 by winning by 20 points - the second biggest margin ever in WC final.   Would not be surprised Ireland and France losing in the quarterfinals like happened in 2019.        My money is on the Springboks winning the 2023 WC.        




Feb 13, 2023, 03:13

The worst Bok World Cup team was 2003 under Roedoelf Straulie. (Poor squad, and even worse coaching team).

The 2nd worst was under Pdivvy. (Average squad who also coached themselves)

Feb 13, 2023, 03:23

The 2011 team was coached by Erasmus. 

Feb 13, 2023, 03:35

To finish first in the group phases to get an easier quarter-final, the Boks have to beat Ireland and Scotland. Then to get to the final, the Boks have to beat France and the All Blacks.

If they get to the final, they almost certainly would win - but the chances of beating the best 3 teams before this are slim. 

Feb 13, 2023, 04:17

I've always hated on the seedings being decided four years before the event. Four months makes more sense, giving teams extra motivation to achieving a top 4 possie at RWC.

Feb 13, 2023, 05:47

I assume for simplicity our chances of winning any of the knockouts is 50% and the chance of beating the minnows in the pool is 100% Then the chance we win the WC equals

The chance we exit the pool and win the knockouts

We will exit the pool provided we don’t lose to both Ireland and Scotland…..the odds of that happening look like 0.5x0.2=0.1….ie we have a 90% chance of getting through the pool.

Which makes our odds of winning the cup 0.9x0.5x0.5x0.5=11.25%

Now we could argue our odds against France, England or Australia are higher than 0.5. But to win the WC we will probably have to go through NZ with lower than 0.5 odds. So assuming 0.5 for the knockouts is a fair approximation.

The WC is pretty much an automatic knockout tournament for the top 5 or so teams. But even if you assume say 50% against NZ and 75% against the other knockout opponents….you still only get to a 25% chance of winning.

WCs are hard to win because of the number of near even rolls of the dice, which makes the Boks/ABs record exceptional and suggests, on the day, these teams are able to defy the odds. Ireland and France have to surmount that hurdle.

Feb 13, 2023, 21:17

Around a 10% chance sounds realistic for the Boks, but the same would apply to Ireland who are in group B.
For France and the All Blacks in Group A, perhaps 15% - given the lopsided nature of this competition- with these 2 groups facing off against each other in the quarters and semis

It is still likely to be one of these 4 teams that win the world cup.

Feb 13, 2023, 22:45

It's a tough one to call. Finishing first might not be in our best interest. Form outside the tournament doesn't necessarily indicate who the real movers and shakers are. Right now, Ireland look like the team to beat, but that can change. Who'd have thought Argentina would have been such a force in 2007 and 2015, or that France and Ireland would have been so poor in 2007 and 2019? The Boks are carrying a lot of baggage, the kind that looks like the makings of an after tournament Media fallout. 

Feb 13, 2023, 22:55

When you have to win 3 matches in a row with near even odds….no team will have much more than a 33% chance of winning. To do even that, your odds in the individual games need to be 70% or higher. That applied to the ABs from 2010 to 2015, I’m not sure it applies to any team now.

Feb 13, 2023, 23:26

The safest bet will probably be winning either group A or B, and hoping who ever finishes 2nd in the other group loses form before the world cup. Otherwise, it is going to be a major slug fest. 

Feb 13, 2023, 23:28

Even then, New Zealand needed a lot of help in 2011. The ref did a hack job on France in the final. 

Feb 14, 2023, 14:41

Ja, Scotland is looking really dangerous right now after beating England at home. Duhan showing his worth, but was quiet against Wales, but they completely skinned them. 3 more games left to see where they are place. Ireland look formidable, but I hate the way they play, the get away with murder. So much obstruction and not getting called for that. A screen player is not supposed to make contact with a defensive player, but they do it all the time. 

This is the only time I would ask Rassie to actually play the media and refs, point to how they use their screen and that its subtle obstruction. That would mean that Ireland whole game plan would implode. 

Agree, SA probably have a 20% chance of not getting out of the group, 80% chance of not getting past the quarter finals and 99.9% chance of not winning the World Cup. 

Still 5 test matches to go, but it will be against NZ, Aus and Arg which could all be momentum killers. 

However, who ever wins from these two pools will be undisputed World Cup champions. 

England, Australia and Wales are absolutely shit at the moment and have the easiest draw, but then again. SA had it in Japan, Ireland folded and all of a sudden we managed to get to the final to face a depleted English team. 

Feb 14, 2023, 14:44

Duhan can be vulnerable in the air. Something to think about. 

Feb 17, 2023, 22:17

Everyone is underestimating the one team that can blow any other team off the park - LOL

Feb 18, 2023, 01:46

But if you look at the facts….there have been 9 WCs. NZ has won 3 out of  9, making you a 33% probability. The Boks by contrast have won 3 WCs out of 7. Head to head we have beaten you twice in WCs and lost to you 3 times….we never met in 99 or 2011. Overall I would say 33% chance for the Boks, 33 % chance for the ABs….33% for the rest is a reasonable way of looking at things.

Feb 18, 2023, 03:43

Plum bring your machine here and let's see how it grades these teams. 

Two soft groups  C&D.

Argentina for semi final place. 

Feb 18, 2023, 07:35

We did play NZ in 99 RWC...and won.

Feb 18, 2023, 08:23

Ja man, vir die 3 of 4 plek.

The runners-up fixture most teams hate.

Feb 18, 2023, 10:41


Feb 22, 2023, 14:10

Shows again that rugby as a sport fails at providing quality competition.

The 6Ns best competition at the moment. Calculation happens but not up to the level of a WC as written in the thread, as losing a game must be considered as a benefit.

The biggest forgotten scandal: the huge boost awarded to SA rugby, as they are given two weeks to prepare the quarter final game while others only one week.

Feb 22, 2023, 14:18

I don't think New Zealand has the forward pack to win 3 tough games in a row. 
Retalick is their key man, he needs to be uninjured and in top form, otherwise, the tight five is not good enough. 

When he returned mid-season last year, the All Blacks looked much better.
While they may have some new tight give players coming through, they will unlikely have the experience required for the world cup. 

Jordy Barrett at 12 has become very important in the backs. He is big and skilful, so the ideal centre. 
Beauden has not been in top form for ages, and he may be past his best. If not, it would be good to have him back at 10, with perhaps Mckenzie at 15. 

Moo-Unga is good, and a more all-round flyhalf - but he does not bring the x-factor that Beauden has. Beudans counter-attacking and ability to play behind a losing pack allows the All Blacks to win games with less possession. 

Feb 22, 2023, 17:01

Wouldn't it be funny if it was Tonga and Romania who qualified from Group B!

Feb 22, 2023, 18:05

No RWC is a walk in the park.

Many on this site have confidence in the management team of the Springboks and we can only trust that they come up with a winning squad for this RWC.

It is going to be a tough road to travel and come out winners.

Go Bokke Go.

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