It’s only going to get tougher
Re: Give Rugby Union a break – Schwalger
I completely agree. One of these days the usual mob who criticise the S.R.U will need to ask themselves who exactly is playing on the field - it isn’t the S.R.U board playing on the field and losing all the scrums and lineouts and getting dispossessed of the ball and giving away penalties and missing tackles.
The people on the field are professionals and they play in some of the best leagues in the world.
They have access to the best coaches, nutritionists, trainers at their clubs. So questions need to be asked about whether the coach is coaching properly and focusing on the right areas or whether the players are just simply going through the motions.
Next year, the RWC 2019 draw is going to be done in March.
Samoa is ranked 14th in the world. Our worst ranking since when the rankings were first established. What that means is that Manu Samoa is going to have 3x Tier 1 teams in its pool. Not just the usual two, but three.
A pool that could potentially include England, South Africa, and Scotland.
Teams that Samoa either has never beaten or only beaten once (Scotland in 2013). That makes it the most difficult world cup draw to date.
Why? Because our performances at the World Cup in 2015 and this year 2016 were a disaster.
We arguably had our best World Cup draw in 2015. It was only South Africa who provided the very difficult match. Samoa could’ve and should’ve beaten Japan and Scotland and it would’ve gone through to the quarter-finals.
That was all because we had a great ranking back in 2012 when the RWC2015 rankings were done.
In 2012, Samoa’s ranking was 7th, the highest it has ever been. This was just after Samoa had beaten Wales on the end of year tour that year.
Ranking points matter for the world cup draw and the world cups matter because that is where the most interest is from fans and sponsors.