This weekend’s action at the Rugby World Cup was like watching an award-winning foreign film.

There’s no denying the standard is incredibly high but you can’t help but feel you’d enjoy it better if you recognised more of the cast and didn’t need a running translation from the commentators as to how much better these guys are than the ones you were tricked into thinking were world class.

While I’ve really enjoyed the tournament it does seem to be going on for quite some time. I’m probably wrong but it feels like this Rugby World Cup has lasted longer than Oscar Pistorius’s stay in prison.

Keep calm and be sympathetic

New Zealand proved their metal against a stiff challenge from South Africa, calmly closing out a two point semi-final like it was a testimonial. The All Blacks are looking every bit the favourites as they march on to their fourth Rugby World Cup final.

After the match a lot of focus was put on New Zealand’s Sonny Bill Williams consoling opposite number Jesse Kriel. In typical Sonny Bill fashion he showed Kriel plenty of sympathy, causing Kriel to open himself up to take the sympathy, only for Sonny Bill to offload the sympathy at the last minute to Julian Savea.

Sonny B

Scar tissue

We were told during the game that all three members of the South Africa back row – Schalk Burger, Duane Vermeulen and Francois Louw – have got exactly same scar on the back of their neck. I’ll bet Schalk Burger’s is a horcrux.

There’s not enough jokes out there for the niche group of people who both follow Harry Potter and International Rugby Union. Slowly but surely I’m aiming to change that.

Schalk

Joking aside, three people who play in the same team having the same scar is no big deal. I used to know three guys in the same group who all had the same tattoo. And in all three of the tattoos ‘Separabit‘ was spelt wrong.

Another niche joke which I won’t be explaining for those that don’t get it.

Was your visit really necessary?

In the build up to the game the South Africa team visited Chelsea FC at their training ground. Given Chelsea’s recent form it mightn’t have been such a shrewd move.

In the game itself on Saturday the South Africans played in a one-off special kit which had pictures of their fans included in the numbers on their shirts.

I suppose that’s what separates them from Chelsea who have their fans on their backs all the time.

Australia’s All Stars

As mentioned in a previous post Australia’s David Pocock is simply phenomenal. Every time there’s a breakdown he’s there within seconds. The AA would do well to take a leaf out of his book.

Man of the match went to Adam Ashley-Cooper who scored three tries in sending Australia to their fourth Rugby World Cup final.

There’s a bit of a pattern emerging in this Rugby World Cup with two of the top six try scorers having double barreled surnames. Ashley-Cooper has four tries while his opposite number in next Saturday’s final Nehe Milner-Skudder has five.

While these double barreled surnames sound great when attached to elite sportsmen, they don’t always work out as well for regular people. Take these two for example…

Hardy Harr

Don’t cry Argentina

Having proved their attacking capabilities against Ireland, Argentina continued to show great flair in attack against Australia. It’s just a pity the Pumas aren’t the best in the world at defending.

They play fast and loose, an attitude which makes for a fascinating spectacle, but we can’t help but collectively cringe when we see those gaping holes at the back.

It’s a description that could just as easily be applied to a swinger’s New Year’s Eve party. In this case, an exclusive party where no one from the southern hemisphere is welcome.

Bowl

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