England’s World Cup dreams came to an end in the final when they were comprehensivelybeaten 32 – 12 by South Africain Yokohama on Saturday.
Before that, Eddie Jones’ side had impressive wins in the knockout stages against Australia and three-time winners New Zealand, as well as three victories in the pool stage.
Former England fly-half and BBC Radio 5 Live pundit Paul Grayson has rated each player’s performance in the final and contribution during the World Cup.
- England have been beaten up – Grayson
- I’m not sure why we lost final – Jones
- ‘Kolisi and South Africa will inspire a nation’
Elliot Daly: (7)Another Eddie Jones project player who repaid his boss with exciting performances and improvement in defense.
Anthony Watson: (7)Remarkable recovery from injury and was threatening with the ball. Vastly improved defender too.
Manu Tuilagi: (8)An absolute powerhouse in attack and a subtle and intelligent defender. If he stays fit he will be world class.
Owen Farrell: (8)Led his team superbly to the final and has grown in stature. Coped with the workload and responsibilities well, but the final performance will hurt him.
Jonny May: (7)Rarely puts a foot wrong these days and up until his injury was a real threat.
George Ford: (7)Delicious in the pool stages and played superbly in the semi-final. The final was a different story and he struggled to impose himself and was replaced by Henry Slade.
Ben Youngs: (7)Eddie stuck with him through thick and thin and he paid him back with some commanding performances. Lost his way in the final a little as England struggled for quick ball.
Mako Vunipola: (7)Appeared late in the tournament after injury and is crucial to England. His scrummaging was attacked by South Africa in the final and was the only negative.
Jamie George: (7)England’s first-choice hooker had a great tournament in the tight and the loose until the final. Could still be in that position in 2023.
Kyle Sinckler: (8)Emerged as a reliable front-row technician with the skills of a back to give him the X-factor. His early concussion in the final hurt him and England.
Maro Itoje: (8)Back to his influential best throughout the tournament and was one of few to have a good game in the final.
Courtney Lawes: (7)Worked incredibly hard to force his way into the starting team in England’s most well-resourced position. Had a strong tournament.
Tom Curry: (8 ( (At) , he played remarkably well and had a superb tournament until the final which was a bridge too far. Many more opportunities to come.
Sam Underhill: (7)Fully fit and firing he is an assassin in defense and a menace in attack. Curry’s partner in crime will be around for a while.
Billy Vunipola: (6)Looked in cruise control for the early part of the tournament and never quite reached his marauding best.
|England’s World Cup|
|Top points scorer:Owen Farrell (58)|
|Most tries scored:Jonny May, Manu Tuilagi, Luke Cowan-Dickie (3)|
|Most clean breaks made:Anthony Watson (10)|
|Most tackles: (Maro Itoje) 71)|
Luke Cowan-Dickie: (7)Strong, powerful and popular he played his role as back-up hooker well .
Joe Marler: (8)Serious scrummager who almost turned the final England’s way, funny bloke too!
Dan Cole: (7)Did fantastically well to get on the trip and was very effective until his final cameo became a main part in a tragedy.
George Kruis: (7)His battle with Lawes brought out the best in him and could easily have started every game.
Mark Wilson: (6)Tough as teak northerner but he only had bit parts to play. His turnover versus New Zealand was crucial in an epic win.
Willi Heinz: (6)Job share with Youngs was done with aplomb, but hamstring injury robbed him of a World Cup final appearance.
Henry Slade: (6)Injury sabotaged early part of the tournament but showed his class in the quarter-final win. Lots more to come from this guy.
Jonathan Joseph : (5)The center never quite got a proper go in the tournament but showed flashes of brilliance.