Two matches on the program this Sunday to conclude a very lively weekend. At 5:45 p.m. on the pitch at the Allianz Riviera in Nice, Scotland must win against Tonga to keep their hopes of the quarter-final alive, before challenging Ireland next Saturday in Group D. Beaten at the opening by South African world champions (3-18), the Chardon XV will however have to be wary of Ikale Tahi, who are also hoping after the slap received against the Irish (16-59).
Later, at 9 p.m., go to Groupama Stadium in Lyon for a clash that looks like a 1/8 final. With their backs against the wall following their historic setback against Fiji (15-22), Australia faces a Wales reinvigorated by their first two successes, in front of these same Fijians then Portugal. This is a great opportunity for the Leek XV to (almost) kick out the Wallabies, but watch out for the injured beast...
Scotland-Tonga (group B): 5:45 p.m. (France 2)
Wales-Australia (group C): 9:00 p.m. (TF1)
Still at rest near Aix-en-Provence, the XV of France remains hanging on the jaw of Antoine Dupont, operated in Toulouse on Saturday morning. “Touched but not sunk”, the captain of the Blues hopes to play again by the end of the competition but everything will depend on the evolution of his injury and the choices of the French staff. Meanwhile, the rest of the group will slowly return to training next week.
Scotland Tonga will be a special match for center three-quarter Tuipulotu, who has dual nationality: “I know he has both jerseys at home. I’ll have to ask my little brother which one he wore,” the 26-year-old joked at a press conference on Friday. “I think he’ll be behind us.”
Despite everything, he admitted to approaching this match differently than usual: “As much as I try not to think about it (in this particular context), it always stays in the back of my mind. "I'm obviously very attached to Tonga and that part of my background, but I'm determined to make Scotland win." There is no doubt that despite this context, he will give everything for the XV du Chardon.
A full-back, the Australian player will start at the opening for the most important match of the year against the Welsh. Scorer and very prominent against Georgia, Donaldson has only one start as number 10 at international level. It was already against the XV du Leek, in November 2022, and the Wallabies had won (39-34) after his exit shortly before the hour mark. Eddie Jones and his men are hoping for the same result this evening, in order to to avoid a historic elimination from the group stage.
In their crucial victory against Samoa (19-10) on Friday, Argentina won all 16 lineouts and 9 scrums played in the game, becoming the first team to record a 100% success rate from set plays in this World Cup. If the spectacle was sometimes lacking in Saint-Étienne, the Pumas responded to stay alive in this World Cup, before facing Chile (September 30) then Japan (October 8).