IRELAND beat France 24-9 in a memorable Rugby World Cup clash on Sunday, October 11 and now face a quarter final game with Argentina without influential captain Paul O’Connell.
The iconic Ireland and Munster player came off the field with a leg injury on Sunday. Fly-half Johnny Sexton also came off injured in the French game.
O’Connell has confirmed that this tournament will be his last in an Ireland jersey, which means that his international career may now be over. Coach Joe Schmidt spoke about his prospects after the game:
“It doesn’t look great with Paul. It looks like an upper hamstring but we will probably have to wait until Monday to give it a scan.”
Regarding playmaker Sexton, Schmidt said: “With Johnny, it looks like an adductor to me, but that’s not the learned eye of a medic. So we are probably going to get him scanned tomorrow. He’s already talking about next week. I’m not sure whether that means he’ll be playing.”
After the victory against France, Ireland have moved out of New Zealand’s path and now face Argentina in the quarter finals.
All four quarter finals this weekend will be northern versus southern hemisphere match-ups. The All Blacks take on France, a game that will recall the 2011 RWC final between the same two countries. South Africa meet Wales and Australia will play Scotland.
As the countdown to the knockout stages commences, rugby fans everywhere will remember one team in particular for their contribution to this tournament’s pool stages tournament; Japan may be leaving the Rugby World Cup but they do so after three wins, one of which includes a legendary victory over South Africa.