Sunday 17 November 2019

David Wallace: 'Semi-final thrillers in prospect but it's All Blacks all the way for me'

'Last weekend showed us why New Zealand are such a strong outfit, and other than a tough opening quarter against South Africa, they have impressed throughout the competition.' (stock photo)
'Last weekend showed us why New Zealand are such a strong outfit, and other than a tough opening quarter against South Africa, they have impressed throughout the competition.' (stock photo)

David Wallace

Like everyone, I'd love to be talking about Ireland's hopes in this weekend's World Cup semi-finals, but the meeting of England and New Zealand could be the game of the tournament.

The meeting of these two teams would have been a great final and of all the sides in the competition I think Eddie Jones's team is the one that New Zealand fear the most. They are more than capable of winning their second World Cup, but this is the ultimate test.

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Last weekend showed us why New Zealand are such a strong outfit, and other than a tough opening quarter against South Africa, they have impressed throughout the competition. As South Africa learned, you have to keep your foot on their throats to kill them off and if you ease off they punish you severely. In my opinion, whoever wins this semi-final will win the tournament outright and I'm edging towards the All Blacks.

Even thought they have not played to their maximum at the World Cup, South Africa are still a dangerous team. In the first half against Japan they should have scored three tries but, like Ireland, errors appeared, the only difference being they managed to come through anyway.

I can't see them having any trouble against a below-par Wales team. France should have won that quarter-final. The sending-off was ridiculous and fully deserved, and losing Romain Ntamack was significant. New Zealand and South Africa to win.

Irish Independent

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