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Rugby World Cup: Four memorable moments on rugby’s greatest stage

By Jonny Wilkinson to Nelson Mandela, we look at a number of the most striking moments in Rugby World Cup history before the 2019 edition’s large kick off…
Four years on, it is one of the most amazing sporting moments to look back upon. Japan faced the Springboks at 2015 at the Rugby World Cup and were expected to keep the score respectable at defeat, and at worst to have ignored.
Eddie Jones’ spirited charges kept neck-and-neck together using the Springboks at Brighton – whose absolute size uttered the Brave Blossoms – before pulling off the jolt in history – perhaps even sporting background.
It was the very first meeting between the 2 states, and after an early Japan penalty, the Evaluation seemed to repay in predictable manner as Francois Louw scored the opening effort in the back.
However, to the shock of everyone seeing, Japan replied with a try of the own – a 10 individual model with backs – because skipper Michael Leitch touched down over the line.
Even the Boks and Bismark du Plessis reacted touching at the rear of another rolling maul to depart 12-10 to things into South Africa at half-time – the Japanese team as they departed earning a standing ovation.
Lood De Jager and Adrian Strauss attempts into the second half each seemed set to place the Boks on their own way, but they could not shake Japan because the boot of Ayumu Goromaru kept his team into contact – four penalties in 15 minutes either side of the Boks tries – and a wonderfully worked attempt by precisely exactly the identical player left matters, almost unbelievably, 29-29 with 10 minutes left.
A Handre Pollard penalty with seven minutes saw South Africa recover the, before the drama started. Before South Africa’s Coenie Oosthuizen had been sin-binned for killing the ball japan, playing pace, worked their way around and inside the Bok 22, also performed 19 stages.
And then, having turned down two penalty shots and opportunities to draw level, and also was held up across the try-line once earlier, Japan and Karne Hesketh struck at the corner four minutes to dead time – to provoke pure unadulterated bedlam at Brighton, Japan and across the French community. It had been pure magic.
The biggest Rugby World Cup Test France vs New Zealand in their 1999 semi-final, of time was described, as the greatest upset in World Cup history, at the moment.
You can find underdogs in World Cup knockout games, and then there’s France from the All Blacks in 1999. Les Bleus had dropped by 47 points to exactly the opposition four weeks previously. They’d ended the Five Nations stone bottom six months previous later defeats at home to England, away to Wales and to Scotland in Paris.
And during the World Cup pool stages, they’d shipped 20 points into Canada, 13 points into Namibia and 19 things to Fiji – all in success, but alarming. They had been expected to have destroyed with the All Blacks favourites, at Twickenham.
France started brightly, and when 5’7″ wing Christophe Dominici ripped through the All Blacks defence from his own half, out-half Christophe Lamaison strolled over for the opening try.
As the wing produced a trademark bulldozing score seven Frenchman struggling to bargain with him the All Blacks reacted through the great Jonah Lomu in just four minutes.
When five minutes struck again into the stage – bundling five France players from the way on a run from 30 odd metres out – the New Zealand lead was 14 points, along with the game looked over.
Two penalties from Lamaison and two shed objectives cut the gap also France sensationally had a five-point lead when Dominici took advantage of a wicked bounce following having a Fabien Galthie kick on multiplayer match.
Over the hour mark, a chip over the top of this New Zealand defence was subsequently seized upon by centre Richard Dourthe, delivering Twickenham wild with France obtaining a 12-point lead that was believable.
When wing Philippe Bernat-Salles played a fourth French try on the rest with six minutes remaining, the score had been stretched to 43-24. Jeff Wilson notched a consolation to leave 43-31 to items, however, it had been the day of France following a quite breathtaking performance.
Going to the 2003 World Cup in England, Australia and head coach Clive Woodward had put pressure on themselves with anointing the team the finest on the planet.
England deservedly had that mantle, defeated at both the All Blacks and Australia away from home in the lead up into the championship and having uttered a Grand Slam. But anticipation was huge.
From the time of this final, having defeated South Africa in the own pool and Wales and France in the quarter-finals along with England were to face hosts Australia – that the Wallabies and the All Blacks having breathed apart from the semi-final.
Led by Eddie Jones, Australia struck on the front when wing Lote Tuqiri towered over Jason Robinson to maintain a Stephen Larkham cross-field kick.
Three Jonny Wilkinson penalties watched Woodward’s prices profit a 9-5 lead, and England had a healthy 14-5 half-time benefit when Robinson slid in from the interval after a flowing movement.
England weren’t to score a point in the second half though, as Wilkinson missed 2 drop-goal attempts, along with Wallabies 10 Elton Flatley punished them with three penalties, one in the last second of this game, meaning extra-time could accompany.
Until England generated one final chance after scrum-half Matt Dawson made a break up the centre to set up Wilkinson A penalty in extra time left matters 17-17.
With just 26 seconds left on the clock now the out-half bisected the articles using a drop goal via his foot to signal ecstasy and a stunning end to the final. It remains the best day in English football history.
Second World Trainers and rugby’s first in 1987 and 1991 were shorn as a consequence of the sports boycott because of apartheid of the Springboks.
The game’s third edition of the tournament in 1995 therefore marked South Africa’s very first participation, as they hosted the competition to end apartheid.
The Boks declared themselves before beating France and also Western Samoa en route to a house World Cup closing with a win at Newlands, going on to top their pool.
There, they faced matters were abandoned by the All Blacks at Ellis Park and a first half 9-6 into South Africa after a drop target and two penalties by Joel Stransky.
Andrew Mehrtens levelled the tie having a drop-goal on 55 minutes, and should have won it late on with another effort professionally from outside the 22, but chopped wide, sending the match to extra time in the first time a Rugby World Cup final had completed.
New Zealand edged before a penalty was converted by Mehrtens, however, Stransky would have the final say as he then won the game using a 30-metre drop-goal and levelled things by means of a penalty.
At the End of the closing, South Africa president Nelson Mandela appeared, clad in Springbok kit, to maneuver skipper Francois Pienaar that the William Webb Ellis Cup in a near unbelievable symbol of the progression of the nation.
It’s gone down as one of the most iconic moments in the history of sport.

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