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    England will learn from World Cup final defeat

    November 03, 2019

    England will learn from World Cup final defeat
    Matt Dawson
    England's World Cup final defeat against South Africa was desperately disappointing.The way England have played at this World Cup and the depth of players they have as a group, this was absolutely the right squad to challenge for the trophy.England fans will all be feeling totally dejected but nowhere near as upset as the players and management will be.
    They were so far off winning that game. There is a weird part of me that, even though I feel totally dejected, does not feel quite as bad as if South Africa had nicked it at the death with a last-minute penalty or drop-goal. England just simply were not good enough.I never felt for one minute that England were in a position to score points then run away with it. It was going to be a battle to the death and unfortunately the Springboks seemed to be more capable of winning a World Cup final.England have learned a big lesson. Those players are going to remember that for the rest of their lives and hopefully store it up to say they are never going to feel like that again, never going to make those mistakes under that sort of pressure again and they will come back as better players.
    'South Africa's triumph will inspire a nation'
    England head coach Eddie Jones has had a blinding tournament and, tactically, has been great throughout.But on this occasion South Africa coach Rassie Erasmus was awesome. Wherever England attacked, the Springboks had defence.They were very disciplined. They were tactically spot on. They played in the right areas. They had the balance of their kicking game opposed to when it was on to run - they chose the right time and made good decisions.We have been praising Jones and waxing lyrical about how perfect England's build-up and preparation has been.But ironically they lost because they looked like they did not have the ability to adapt on the field when South Africa were not playing the way that England expected.It is very difficult to change on the field, but it has been a fairly common trait of England sides over the past 10 years of not being able to adapt under that type of pressure.South Africa were fantastic in the set-piece, scrums and line-outs, and the breakdown. Faf de Klerk was running the show from scrum-half.England very early on were chasing shadows rather than having a broader view that South Africa were playing in a different way so they needed to change it up.
    Unfortunately they tried to play the same way against a team that were just lapping up the contact.The senior England players should have stood up and realised what they were doing what was not working.There were some key individuals who needed to stand up in a leadership role under that extreme pressure. In those environments, it really stands out what a difference it makes to have a captain in the forward pack.
    Owen Farrell has been a great leader for England but it needed a vice-captain to step in up front, like Kieran Read or Sam Warburton would have done.
    'The Springboks will be heralded as heroes'
    Siya Kolisi
    Siya Kolisi is South Africa's first black captain
    There are millions of dejected England fans all over the world. Ordinarily, there would be no reason to reflect positively on that type of result.

    But, looking at the larger picture that South Africa winning that game paints, I do not think any other final has a bigger political story to tell than this one.

    You would have to not have any emotion in your body to look at the picture of Siya Kolisi - South Africa's first black captain - lifting the trophy and not understand the power of what he and his team have done; what he has done as an individual to effectively change the view of millions of people within sport.

    Very few leaders in the world get that opportunity and he has just done it by being him and playing rugby. So there are huge positives to the outcome.

    Kolisi wants to 'inspire every kid' in South Africa
    Japan 2019 'probably greatest' ever World Cup
    The game of rugby means so much to a lot of people, but on reflection the game has much more of a profound effect on a nation like South Africa than it does anywhere else in the world.

    Rugby has done an amazing job and that South Africa team will be quite rightly heralded as heroes for more reasons than just winning a rugby game.

    It started when the Springboks won in 1995, shortly after apartheid ended, when Nelson Mandela presented Francois Pienaar with the trophy.

    But now, 24 years after that breakthrough, we are still talking about the inequalities that South Africans are trying to fix.

    Back in 1995 you might have thought maybe within eight or 12 years, could there be a black captain of South Africa challenging for the trophy? It has taken 24 years.

    Let's hope in another 24 years we are not in a similar predicament. Let's hope that this game has significantly moved the dial for the country, the politics and all the people that those guys represented today.

    What next for Eddie Jones and his team?
    England and Jones
    Eddie Jones has a contract with England until 2021
    People are going to be after Jones now but you cannot get away from the fact that he has done a magnificent job with that England team.

    He has taken them to the brink of world domination. They have had a bad day at the office.

    But one bad day compared to the many weeks of success he has brought to this England side means he should be congratulated and praised for what he has done.

    Since he became coach in 2015, Jones has turned England from a team that could not get out of their pool at a home World Cup to a team that were in the final four years later.

    So the time is right to give Jones a pat on the back and let him enjoy a few beers.

    A lot of those players are going to be around in four years' time. Hopefully, Jones will stick around and help in some way so England can progress even further.

    Maro Itoje
    Maro Itoje made 16 tackles in the World Cup final against South Africa
    It is going to be a strange feeling for the players getting back home and understanding the euphoria that was going on back in the UK.

    You have to get back into your club jersey and it is not quite as intense and a very different environment.

    The players are going to make sure that they focus on all the positives collectively and that they keep themselves fit.

    There is a danger that they get frustrated and go straight into the club season and pick up injuries.

    Then if the Six Nations does not go well, it spirals instead of giving them rest and looking after them because they have been maxed out.

    Whatever happens, it is going to be a while until the England players can pick themselves back up after this.
    Captain Siya Kolisi wants to 'inspire every kid' in South Africa
    From the sectionRugby Union
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    Kolisi 'grateful' for South Africa unity
    South Africa captain Siya Kolisi hopes winning the World Cup in Japan will "inspire every kid" back home.

    The Springboks won a record-equalling third world title after beating England 32-12 in a dominant performance in Yokohama.

    Kolisi, who became the first black South African captain to lift the William Webb Ellis Trophy, says victory will "pull the country together".

    "We had one goal and we have achieved it," said Kolisi.

    "A lot of us in South Africa just need an opportunity and there are so many untold stories."

    'Kolisi will inspire people far beyond the rugby pitch'
    The 'unique story' of South Africa's black captain
    England have been 'beaten up' - Grayson
    The 28-year-old flanker wears the iconic number six jersey for the Springboks, which was the same number worn by Nelson Mandela when he handed the same trophy in 1995 to South Africa captain Francois Pienaar - who also wore number six.

    The image of Mandela handing the Rugby World Cup to Pienaar - an iconic image of South African sport
    Mandela handing the Rugby World Cup to Pienaar in 1995 - an iconic image of South African sport
    Kolisi, who grew up up in a poor township of Zwide, just outside Port Elizabeth on the Eastern Cape, flew his father abroad for the first time to watch him represent his country in Japan.

    He added: "You can never forget where you come from or the people who have helped you get here so I just wanted to celebrate with him [his father].

    "Growing up, I never dreamed of a day like this at all. When I was a kid all I was thinking about was getting my next meal."

    The skipper said coach Rassie Erasmus told the players they were not just playing for themselves, but for all of South Africa. The country is suffering an economic crisis with unemployment at 29% and Kolisi said he has "never seen south Africa like this".

    "We have so many problems in our country but a team like this, from different backgrounds, achieved our goal," he added.

    "Coach Rassie supported me when I was 18 years old and I've been working hard since then."


    "Amazing!": South Africa rugby fans go wild at World Cup win
    Springbok try scorers Makazole Mapimpi, who also comes from a poor township like Kolisi, and Cheslin Kolbe are both black and the skipper said his side's performance shows how "different races can come together".

    An emotional Mapimpi, who scored the Springbok's first try in their third World Cup final, was also in reflective mood after the full-time whistle, saying he had come a "long way".

    "I'm blessed," he said. "I'm from the rural areas.

    "I didn't make the South Africa schools [team]. It means a lot for me, but also for the boys who didn't go to private schools.

    "A lot of things happen in South Africa that affect us and we fight to push those things away.

    "This is a big achievement for me, it's my first World Cup and I have won it."


    Watch key moments from South Africa's emphatic win over England
    'Rugby brings hope'
    South Africa coach Erasmus echoed his captain's comments, saying rugby is "privilege" after leading his country to glory in his first World Cup as coach.

    "In South Africa pressure is not having a job, pressure is one of your friends being murdered," he said.

    "Rugby shouldn't be something that creates pressure on you, it brings hope.

    "Hope is when you play well and people watch you on Saturday, have a nice barbecue and watch the game and feel good after."

    Erasmus took the decision to hand Kolisi the armband in May last year and the Springboks coach said it is "tough" for his captain to tell his story.

    Siya Kolisi
    Siya Kolisi (left) poses with Prince Harry after winning the World Cup
    "It's easy to talk about going through hard times and struggling to get opportunities, but it's tough to tell people that there were days when I didn't have food or shoes to wear," he said.

    "And when you sit down and think about it clearly, and think there was a stage when Siya went through stuff like that, then he sits here as captain holding this trophy.

    "That should sum up what Siya is."

    Relive the World Cup final as it happened
    'Today was magical' - analysis

    John Smit discusses the moment Siya Kolisi lifted the Webb Ellis Cup
    South Africa's 2007 World Cup winning captain John Smit on BBC Radio 5 Live

    Even as a guy who has won it, this is a far bigger occasion because of where we are as a country at the moment and where we are going. I always wondered if it was too much of a fairytale to see Siya win the trophy, but it could not have happened at a better time. To see a guy like Siya be able to lift the World Cup trophy, it will have a significant impact on our country.

    In a team that used to represent segregation, but now represents unity, to be led by a black African man is more significant than anyone could ever imagine. This team has handled this emotional rollercoaster so well and they have acknowledged their responsibility. Today was magical.

    Siya Kolisi with his children
    Kolisi carried his children as he led his South Africa team on a lap of honour
    Former Springboks captain Jean de Villiers

    The significance is so much more than just a rugby game that's been won, it's for the whole country. We've been in the doldrums but they've been able to get themselves out of it and lift that beautiful trophy.

    Schalk Burger, a member of the 2007 World Cup-winning team

    We thought England's performance in the semi-final [against New Zealand] was the performance of the World Cup but this performance was just outstanding. The thing I enjoyed most about it was our attitude. We played rugby the way only the Springboks can and we dominated every facet of

    Beaumont hails Japan 2019 as 'probably greatest' ever
    2 hours agoFrom the sectionRugby Union
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    Siya Kolisi and Bill Beaumont
    Bill Beaumont presents the Rugby World Cup trophy to Siya Kolisi
    Japan 2019 will be remembered as "probably the greatest Rugby World Cup" in the event's 32-year history says World Rugby chairman Sir Bill Beaumont.

    The tournament was the first time the showpiece had been staged away from one the sport's traditional heartlands.

    South Africa beat England in Saturday's final to end a tournament that has been embraced by its hosts.

    "Japan 2019 will be remembered as probably the greatest Rugby World Cup," said Beaumont.

    "It has certainly been the most ground-breaking in terms of bringing the game to new audiences and attracting new fans to the sport."

    Although Typhoon Hagibis - a seasonal hazard in the region - forced the cancellation of three pool-stage matches, Japan's run to their first quarter-final, with victories over Ireland and Scotland en route, galvanised local interest.

    World Rugby's figures show that stadiums were filled to 99% capacity for the tournament with 1.84m tickets sold, while Japan's victory over Scotland attracted a record domestic television audience of 54.8m.

    Worldwide World Rugby say the tournament generated 1.7bn digital video views online.

    2027 and 2031 hosts to be announced together
    Beaumont announced that the 2027 and 2031 tournaments will be selected at the same time, just as England 2015 and Japan 2019 were, as officials aim to repeat the combination of sharing the tournament between established rugby nations and potential new markets. The process will begin in November 2020.

    France are already selected as the hosts of the 2023 tournament, beating Ireland and South Africa in November 2017.

    "More than just that, Japan 2019 showed the power of a nation that really did dare to dream," World Rugby chief executive Gosper added.

    "We really hope that other unions find the courage to throw their hats in the ring to host the tournament."

    The United States has expressed an interest in hosting either the 2027 or 2031 events, while Argentina, Australia and Russia have also suggested they will enter the race.


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