Prediction – New Zealand 36 France 13
Four years ago New Zealand was a nation in mourning. They had been favourites to lift the 2007 Rugby World Cup and yet some how they exited the tournament in the quarter-finals, some say because of bad refereeing, others due to lack of leadership in the dying minutes of the game. Whatever the reason, the stunned look on Dan Carter’s face as he sat on the sidelines whilst the game clock wound down reflected the emotions of the rugby-mad nation. Well here they are up against the old foe again, Les Blues. Despite the incredible trans-Tasman rivalry between New Zealand and Australia, a loss against Australia last weekend in the semi would have been a lot easier to take than a loss against the French next weekend. Surely not again, having beaten them once already in the tournament, seeing them lose to a brave Tongan team, surely there is no way the All Blacks will lose next weekend. Au contraire, mon ami. Rugby is a funny old game and the ball is oddly shaped for a reason. The rugby ball is designed to have a cruel bounce, sometimes popping up into your arms but at other times careering off at an impossible angle into your opponent’s. All the indicators say an easy All Black win, with the Openside Predictor stating a 36 to 13 romp for the men in black, but when you play with a rugby ball anything can happen, any team can win on any given Sunday.
New Zealand v France results since the Rugby World Cup 2007
|23 Oct 2011|
|24 Sep 2011|
|28 Nov 2009|
|20 Jun 2009|
|13 Jun 2009|