13th October 2015

Closing the pool stages

Canada v Romania

From prop Hubert Buydens’ lumberjack appearance, to Ray Barkwill’s great big bushy beard to the long flowing locks of eventual man of the match Jeff Hassler, it proved to be a hairy day for the Canadians, as Romania stunned them with a late fightback. The Oaks scored 17 points in the final 28 minutes as their powerful pack overcame Canada in the biggest comeback in World Cup history. Covering the men in red in both halves meant missing out on the Romanian’s tries but there were plenty of opportunities for photos after the final whistle, as the underdogs celebrated a memorable victory. Full set of images from the match


Jeff Hassler - Canada v Romania

Jeff Hassler of Canada takes on the Romania defence


Hubert Buydens - Canada v Romania

Hirsute Hubert Buydens of Canada celebrates a try


Jeff Hassler - Canada v Romania

Jeff Hassler of Canada takes on the Romania defence


Celebration - Canada v Romania

Romania players celebrate their first Rugby World Cup win


South Africa v USA

The first nilling of the tournament came at a sold out Stadium at the Olympic Park, as South Africa reached the quarter-finals by thrashing USA by 64 points. The headlines were all about Bryan Habana though, who equalled Jonah Lomu’s World Cup try-scoring record with a hat-trick. The winger scored three times in 21 second-half minutes to draw level with Lomu’s mark of 15 World Cup tries. Full set of images from the match


Tendai Mtawarira - South Africa v USA

Tendai Mtawarira of South Africa offloads the ball after being tackled


Francois Louw - South Africa v USA

Francois Louw of South Africa in action at a scrum


Jesse Kriel - South Africa v USA

Jesse Kriel of South Africa is tackled


Bryan Habana - South Africa v USA

Bryan Habana of South Africa scores his third and record-equaling try


England Captain’s Run

After England’s devastating failure to make the knockout stages, their fixture against Uruguay in Manchester was one they would probably want to forget, giving a new meaning to the term dead rubber. Spirits looked understandably down during training and the ensuing press conference. A rare England game up north was something to savour though, and they ran out eventual 60-3 winners in a fully supportive sold out stadium the following day. Full set of images from the match


Manchester City Stadium - England Captain's Run

England players make their way onto the field at the Manchester City Stadium


Chris Robshaw - England Captain's Run

Chris Robshaw of England leads the Captain’s Run


Chris Robshaw - England Captain's Run

Chris Robshaw of England looks on during the session


Tom Youngs - England Captain's Run

Tom Youngs of England faces the media


New Zealand v Tonga

All Blacks centre Ma’a Nonu celebrated his 100th cap for his country as the All Blacks weathered an early Tongan storm to run out 47-9 winners at Newcastle’s rocking St James’ Park. Tries from Ben Smith and Tony Woodcock before a second-half double from Nehe Milner-Skudder wrapped up a clean sweep of pool stage victories, even if the number one ranked side in the world look nowhere near their best. Full set of images from the match


Haka and Sipi Tau - New Zealand v Tonga

A face-off ensues as the All Blacks perform their haka as Tonga perform the Sipi Tau


Ben Smith - New Zealand v Tonga

Ben Smith of New Zealand scores the opening try of the match


Luke Romano - New Zealand v Tonga

Luke Romano of New Zealand claims the ball at a lineout


Nehe Milner-Skudder - New Zealand v Tonga

Nehe Milner-Skudder of New Zealand scores a dramatic try in the second half


France v Ireland

The pool-deciding games where coming in thick and fast at the weekend, as France faced their Six Nations rivals Ireland in Cardiff. A man of the match display from Sean O’Brien drove the Irish to a pulsating 24-9 win, condemning the French to a quarter-final against defending champions New Zealand. There have been some incredible atmospheres at this World Cup, Brighton, Twickenham and Newcastle spring to mind, but the noise at the enclosed Millennium Stadium was something else, with the men in green roared on by their army of supporters. Full set of images from the match


Sebastien Tillous-Borde - France v Ireland

Sebastien Tillous-Borde of France presents the ball


Keith Earls - France v Ireland

Keith Earls of Ireland looks to gather the ball


Louis Picamoles - France v Ireland

Louis Picamoles of France rallies his forwards at a scrum


Ireland supporters - France v Ireland

Ireland supporters in the crowd celebrate a try


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