South Africa deserve World Cup but teams’ approach needs to change | Robert Kitson

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Fiji and Portugal should be proud, Ireland and France will have regrets but there has to be incentive for teams to vary tactics

It was Andy Farrell who best summed up the 2023 Rugby World Cup. “Sport can be cruel sometimes – I guess that’s why we love it,” Ireland’s head coach said after his team’s heartbreaking defeat by New Zealand in the quarter-finals. Which is precisely how every All Black squad member felt on Saturday evening as dazzling laser beams, coloured lights and fireworks turned the Stade de France into the planet’s dampest nightclub and South Africa’s ecstatic players danced their way into Springbok folklore.

The extraordinary Siya Kolisi was still singing out loud to himself when he entered the post-game press conference clutching the Webb Ellis Cup, in sharp contrast to his downcast All Black counterpart Sam Cane who had just left. Few Test captains have ever looked as pained as Cane after his team’s record 35-7 defeat by the Boks at Twickenham in August. Here he resembled a man whose entire world had collapsed. The wafer-thin margins between sporting success and failure have seldom been more starkly illustrated.

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Written by Robert Kitson in Paris
This news first appeared on under the title “South Africa deserve World Cup but teams’ approach needs to change | Robert Kitson”. Bolchha Nepal is not responsible or affiliated towards the opinion expressed in this news article.