The Latest: Savea persisting with goggles despite issues
TOKYO (AP) — The Latest on Day 19 at the Rugby World Cup (all times local):
New Zealand loose forward Ardie Savea is having issues with his goggles but will keep trying to play with them.
Savea became the first player to wear goggles in a Rugby World Cup last Wednesday against Canada. He wore them for only minutes though because the strap broke.
He didn't wear them when he started against Namibia on Sunday because in the warmup they fogged up in the humidity.
Savea says he will persist with them because he needs to. The vision in his left eye is failing — his sight is already blurry — and he needs the goggles to protect his right eye so he can reduce the risk of going totally blind.
"I'll keep training in them, and if they're working, they're working," he says. "But it's hard with the conditions. If they're not working on game day, I'll park it up, but if they are, sweet."
France must iron out its inconsistencies at the Rugby World Cup before facing England in their table-topping Pool C decider on Saturday.
That's the view of scrumhalf Antoine Dupont, who has highlighted where the French lineup has made its most errors in the three group games so far.
"There are a few things to look at," Dupont said. "The problems persist. We made handling errors and the set-pieces were not always reliable."
France led comfortably against Argentina, the United States, and Tonga before getting reeled back in each game.
"We missed the control that would have allowed us to be more comfortable, but we were never in real trouble or very worried," Dupont said. "Our defense was strong. We are still in a good place overall."
England tops the group by two points because it leads France 3-1 in bonus points.
When the sides last met, England routed France 44-8 in the Six Nations.
But Dupont hopes the fact France is already qualified takes some of the stress away, and the Tricolors will therefore play more freely on Saturday at Yokohama.
"We can measure ourselves against one of the best teams in the world without having to worry about qualification," Dupont said. "It's always a good test. After the pool phase there is no good draw, there are only big teams left."
Australia has made 10 changes to the starting lineup that beat Uruguay last weekend for its last Pool D match against Georgia on Friday in Shizuoka.
A win will secure the Wallabies a quarterfinals spot.
Flanker Jack Dempsey is the only player to retain his place in the forwards. David Pocock is captain.
Halves Nic White and Matt To'omua, wing Jordan Petaia and fullback Kurtley Beale also return. To'omua switches from inside center to flyhalf and Petaia moves from left to right wing.
White and To'omua have never previously played together at 9 and 10 for Australia. They are the 11th halves combination for the Wallabies since the 2015 Rugby World Cup.
The front row of Scott Sio, Tolu Latu, and Sekope Kepu started together only once previously, last November in the 37-18 loss to England.
Australia: Kurtley Beale, Jordan Petaia, James O'Connor, Samu Kerevi, Marika Koroibete, Matt To'omua, Nic White; Isi Naisarani, David Pocock (captain), Jack Dempsey, Rory Arnold, Izack Rodda, Sekope Kepu, Tolu Latu, Scott Sio. Reserves: Jordan Uelese, James Slipper, Taniela Tupou, Adam Coleman, Michael Hooper, Will Genia, Christian Lealiifano, Dane Haylett-Petty.
Two-time champion South Africa seeks a bonus-point win at the expense of Canada to be certain of advancing to the quarterfinals in the only Rugby World Cup match on Tuesday.
The teams meet indoors in Kobe's Misaki Stadium, and both teams are wary of controlling possession. All three previous games in Kobe — England-United States, Scotland-Samoa, Ireland-Russia — have suffered from more than 30 handling errors each in humid conditions. But the Tier One side has won each time.
The Springboks have rebounded from their opening loss to New Zealand by beating Namibia 57-3 and 14-man Italy 49-3, and expect their second-string team to manage Canada.
The Canadians have lost to Italy 48-7 and to New Zealand 63-0, and are building to a last Pool B match against Namibia this weekend.
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