Rugby World Cup Semifinal: Key Questions Leading to All Blacks vs. Argentina Showdown


Rugby World Cup Semifinal: Key Questions Leading to All Blacks vs. Argentina Showdown

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In the upcoming Rugby World Cup semifinal, the mighty All Blacks will face off against Argentina at the Stade de France in Paris. The match is set to kick off at 8 am on Saturday (NZT), with live coverage available on Stuff (featuring te reo commentary), Sky Open, and Sky Sport 1 starting at 6.45 am.

The All Blacks’ journey to this point has been nothing short of remarkable, especially considering the pressure they faced in the quarterfinals against Ireland, a team ranked as the number one in World Rugby. Ireland had won 17 consecutive games and defeated the All Blacks in three of their last four meetings. However, the All Blacks defied the odds and emerged victorious with a score of 28-24 in a thrilling match held in Paris.

Now, the focus shifts to their next challenge – Argentina. This time, the All Blacks find themselves in the role of favorites, a significant change from their recent matches against the Irish. The burning questions leading up to the semifinal revolve around whether the All Blacks can maintain their exceptional performance against Ireland and replicate it against Argentina.

In response to these questions, rugby writers Marc Hinton and Richard Knowler weigh in. Knowler believes that replicating such an extraordinary effort is unlikely, given the exceptional nature of their performance against Ireland. However, he warns that Argentina, led by their coach Michael Cheika, will be determined to avenge their previous loss to the All Blacks and exploit any vulnerability they may display after the high of their last victory.

Hinton concurs with Knowler’s assessment, acknowledging the uniqueness of their previous performance. He emphasizes that the All Blacks don’t need to be on the edge of desperation to secure a win against the Pumas. Instead, a disciplined and well-prepared approach should suffice for victory.

In evaluating Argentina’s chances of an upset, Knowler gives them a rating of four out of ten, highlighting their gritty, disruptive style of play, which could pose challenges for the All Blacks. On the other hand, Hinton rates their chances at one out of ten, emphasizing the All Blacks’ historical dominance over Argentina and their strong position in this World Cup.

Ultimately, the consensus is that if the All Blacks maintain their focus and composure, they should secure victory with relative ease


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