Everything you need to know about the 2023 Rugby World Cup

Rugby World Cup

Under coach Eddie Jones, the Wallabies side is captained by Will Skelton

The Wallabies commence their Rugby World Cup campaign in France on Sunday, with all their games shown live and free on Channel Nine and 9Now

Under coach Eddie Jones, the Wallabies side captained by Will Skelton will be out to bring glory back to the green and gold on the international stage.

They face a field featuring big names in world rugby – South Africa and New Zealand, tournament favourites and hosts France, alongside Ireland, England, Scotland and Wales, plus Argentina and Fiji in a field of 20 countries all fighting to win the William Webb Ellis trophy.

Nine’s commentary team of rugby union stars and experts will be led by Michael Atkinson and Nick McArdle will include Wallabies legends Tim Horan, Mat Rogers, Justin Harrison, James Horwill, Morgan Turinui and Stephen Hoiles.

All Blacks Sonny Bill Williams and Andrew Mehrtens, female internationals Sera Naiqama and Allana Ferguson, plus caller Sean Maloney will complete Nine’s commentary lineup for live game coverage.

On the ground in France for Wide World of Sports and 9News will be former Wallaby outside back Drew Mitchell.

See Also: Rugby World Cup 2023: Everything you need to know about the commentators

Nine Director of Sport, Brent Williams, said: “Nine and Wide World of Sports is thrilled to be the home of all Wallabies matches throughout this historic Rugby World Cup. Any event of this magnitude is “must watch” for sports fans all over the country but this one takes on even greater significance as Eddie Jones unveils his next generation of Wallaby superstars to take on the rest of the world. You can see it all live and free on Nine and 9NOW with every single match on Stan Sport.”

Stan Sport will show every game of RWC23 live, ad-break free and in 4K Ultra HD.

What To Expect

Wide World of Sports’ rugby expert Drew Mitchell gave his assessment on the competing nations ahead of the beginning of the Rugby World Cup kicking off.

Drew Mitchell

Drew Mitchell

Wallabies: Haven’t had the preparation fans wanted to see, but in Eddie Jones we trust! He has a proven track record at RWCs and he’s sure to spring a few surprises. They’re our national team and it’s time to get behind them.

New Zealand: Weird to say about the All Blacks, but they’re somewhat going under the radar. Strong build-up to the RWC aside from their record loss against South Africa. Is that the loss they needed? Time will tell. Expect them to go deep.

South Africa: They have the squad and play the type of game that wins World Cups. Set-piece dominance, kick their goals, have X-factor out wide. Can they go back to back? I think they can. Captain Siya Kolisi’s incredible early return from injury is a huge boost.

France: The host nation with plenty of expectations to win it. Can they harness the pressure? Losing fly-half Romain Ntamack is a huge blow, but having elite scrum-half Antoine Dupont is a massive advantage.

England: It hasn’t been a great build-up for England. Captain Owen Farrell and Billy Vunipola suspended to start the tournament isn’t ideal, along with pre-tournament injuries. Will history repeat and see England face the Wallabies at Marseille in the quarter-finals?

Ireland: Arguably the form team over the past two years. Johnny Sexton returning from suspension could be the boost they need.

Argentina: Do not write the Los Pumas off. Former Wallabies coach Michael Cheika has this team full of confidence and they are more than capable of going deep in the tournament.

Wales: Not much is going right for the Welsh. But they’re on the favourable side of the draw and may surprise.

Scotland: The Scots are in great form. Finn Russell is pulling the strings and has them playing a high attacking style. They’re in a tough pool but may cause an upset and progress into the knockouts.

The best of the rest: The Pacific nations are looking stronger than ever.

Fiji recently defeated England for the first time in history. X-factor across the park, and with the experience gained through the Fiji Drua in Super Rugby, mixed with their European contingent, Fiji will be a problem. Joshua Tuisova is granite, a winger who breaks tackles for fun.

Samoa and Tonga are also bolstered with players returning to their cultural heritage. Players who have previously represented other Tier 1 nations are now suiting up for Samoa and Tonga and both squads look formidable.

Tonga’s Charles Piatau will be dangerous in the back field for the men in red, and will definitely feature in highlight reels for RWC 2023.

Samoa’s UJ Seuteni represented Australia in under 20s, has been playing in France for over five years, and has developed into a world-class centre. He recently won the European championship with La Rochelle.


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