Wednesday 18 October 2017

Kiwi flops at World cup

2007

France were hosts but had no home advantage when they met the All Blacks in Cardiff. The Kiwis were heavy favourites but crashed out 20-18 -- after leading 13-3 at half-time -- in the quarter-final. The scapegoat was English ref Wayne Barnes who was accused of bias towards the French, missed a forward pass and harshly sent Luke McAlister -- who missed a last-minute drop goal -- to the sin-bin.

2003

The All Blacks bowed out at the semi-final stage as they were stunned 22-10 by hosts Australia in a frenzied semi-final in Sydney. Cheeky Wallaby scrum-half George Gregan's taunt to the losing Kiwis became legendary: "Four more years! Four more years!" English ref Chris White came in for plenty of stick from All Blacks fans.

1999

One of the finest games of all time. The French produced a staggering performance to win a Twickenham semi-final 43-31. France were written off against the tournament's red-hot favourites and hardly helped their cause by falling 24-10 behind but Les Bleus were inspired and in an incredible turnaround piled on 33 points as the All Blacks fell apart, even with Jonah Lomu in their ranks.

1995

One of the great conspiracy theories. Forty-eight hours before a final in South Africa against the Springboks, amid the fervour of Nelson Mandela's rise to the presidency, the entire All Black team suffered food poisoning after being served by a waitress called "Suzie". Whether the offending substance was chilli sauce, chicken burgers or prawns has never been discovered. A below-par New Zealand -- who routed England in the semi-final -- were beaten 15-12 in extra-time by a late Joel Stransky drop goal.

1991

After winning the inaugural World Cup on home soil, the All Blacks travelled to Britain and Ireland for the second version but were stunned in the semi-final at Lansdowne Road, as David Campese led the Wallabies to a 16-6 win. Little did Grant Fox and Co realise that they would still be starved of global success 20 years on.

Irish Independent

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