New Zealand v Wales: Rugby World Cup 2019 bronze final – live! – The Guardian,

New Zealand v Wales: Rugby World Cup 2019 bronze final – live! – The Guardian,

72 min:Now there is fine work in defense from Welsh winger Adams, as he tidies up a kick towards the corner and then smashes through a double tackle to relieve the pressure on his team.

71 min:Skills from Beauden Barrett:

Rugby World Cup(@ rugbyworldcup)November 1, 2019

67 min:Now Wales attack – No 7 James Davies makes a strong burst on the left but he knocks on – however, Wayne Barnes takes it back for an earlier penalty. Wales kick for the corner as Gatland shares a joke up in the stands with his attack coach Stephen Jones. Wales don’t the line-out quite right, but move through more phases with the All Blacks ’defense under considerable pressure. Jonathan Davies tries a grubber kick, which doesn’t come off, and the All Blacks have the put-in at a defensive scrum.


65 min:Front-foot ball for New Zealand now. They win a penalty for Hadleigh Parkes not rolling away, and kick for the corner. The All Blacks want to sign off from this tournament with a few more tries …

Try! 58 min: Try! New Zealand 35 – 17 Wales (Josh Adams)

A top-class score with a pick-and-go by Adams from short range. That is his seventh try of the tournament – and no-one will catch him at the top of the try-scoring charts. Hats off to Wales for battling back into this one after some quicksilver rugby from New Zealand had them on the back foot in the third quarter. Adams has shown tonight that he is dangerous at close quarters with defenders as well as when he has space out on the wing. On a number of occasions he’s shown superb technique and strength to make headway in tight spaces where less powerful wingers would be driven back. Biggar converts.

Wales’ wing Joshua Adams scores.
Wales’ wing Joshua Adams scores. Photograph: Charly Triballeau / AFP via Getty Images

Updated (at 6.) am EDT

58 min:Now Wales come again. A blacks wall of defenders is lined up on their try line. Davies tries to dummy his way over … then it’s a. try for Josh Adams!

Updated (at 6.) am EDT

55 min:Wales stream into the All Blacks 22! It’s their best attack of the second half so far, but an Elliot Dee pass goes astray. Now, Wales captain Alun Wyn Jones comes off to a gigantic ovation from the entire stadium. What a shift he has put in at this tournament. Miles Harrison, on commentary, says broadcasters in the media section are on their feet to applaud Jones too. Jake Ball comes on. Sonny Bill Williams and Ryan Crotty off for New Zealand, too, as Hansen makes five changes in one hit.

Wales’ Alun Wyn Jones walks past teammate Jake Ball as he leaves the pitch to a standing ovation.
Wales’ Alun Wyn Jones walks past teammate Jake Ball as he leaves the pitch to a standing ovation . Photograph: Issei Kato / Reuters


52 min:Let’s hope this final half an hour sees Wales fight back and avoid a real thrashing at the hands of the All Blacks, who are increasingly warming to their task. Gatland and his players don’t deserve that. They just need to find a bit of continuity and perhaps the off gap in New Zealand’s defense. Which is easier said than done, of course.


47 min:Aaron Shingler, Gareth Davies and Dan Biggar are on for Wales now. Moriarty, Williams, Patchell are off.

Updated at 6. 16 am EDT

45 min:B. Barrett continues to look razor-sharp in possession. Now the All Blacks flood down the left wing, and Ben Smith is over for his hat-trick! Wayne Barnes wants the TMO to check first … and it’s no try! Ioane patted an off load from Sonny Bill Williams which ended up in the hands of Ben Smith. It’s ruled forward of Ioane’s hand. Those replays didn’t look conclusive to me – seems a touch harsh to rule it out.

Updated (at 6.) am EDT

Graeme Simpsonemails from the land of the long white cloud:

“Watching live on Spark TV in NZ. There’s a one hour delay on free-to-air on TVONE, here. ”

(min:Rhys Carre and Elliot Dee on for Wales. ************

Try! 41 min: New Zealand 35 – Wales

Mo’unga kicks for touch in the corner, the resulting Wales line-out is spoiled and New Zealand have their opponents under pressure early in the second half, spinning the ball out to the right. Taking two defenders out of the game, Sonny Bill Williams off-loads very nicely to Ryan Crotty who is over for his own farewell score. Smith the scrum-half was in the thick of the action again and is making his team tick. Mo’unga converts.

Ryan Crotty touches down to score New Zealand’s fifth try.
Ryan Crotty touches down to score New Zealand’s fifth try. Photograph: Tom Jenkins / The Guardian


Second half kick-off!

Can Wales fight back from 18 points down ? Here we go with the final 40 minutes of both Hansen and Gatland’s reigns …

Updated (at 6.) am EDT

Half-time reading for you.

Paul Rees on how South Africa want a war of attrition in tomorrow’s final:

Andy Bullon England, defying stereotypes on their march to the final:

Jonny Wilkinson, who knows a thing or two about playing a World Cup final, dropped in on England training this week. Here is Gerard Meagher:

And last but by no means least– Robert Kitson spoke to today’s referee Wayne Barnes back in August:

See you in five minutes.

Updated (at 5.) am EDT

We wanted flowing, running rugbyand that’s certainly what we ‘ ve had from both sides. Wales have seen a couple of errors punished in the usual style by New Zealand, but if they can get the first score after the break, there is no question they can get back in this.

Try! 40 min: New Zealand 28 – 10 Wales

The All Blacks attack on the right, and a wonderful pass by scrum-half Aaron Smith finds his namesake Ben in space on the wing. He skips beyond Welsh No 9 Williams thanks to a textbook hand-off in the face, and also burns off Adams in the corner, before grounding his second try of the match. Hat-trick second half? Mo-unga knocks over the conversion in style and it’s half-time.

Ben Smith of New Zealand goes over to score their fourth try.
Ben Smith of New Zealand goes over to score their fourth try. Photograph: Tom Jenkins / The Guardian


39 min:As we approach half-time, Wales move the ball into the All Blacks’ half, but then Ken Owens coughs up a penalty for going off his feet at a ruck. Wales are making mistakes here and there, which is of course a sign of the pressure they’re being put under by their opponents.

Mary K Dearsley emails:

“Once again NZers have no free to air live coverage, so following you again. (Have had a week in Cook Islands where all RWC games were free to air live). ”

All Blacks fans unable to watch their team on TV yet again! Shocking, it really is.

Try! 32 min: New Zealand 21 – 10 Wales (Ben Smith)

That is a moment of carelessness by Wales that is ruthlessly punished. Wales are trying to build another attack from their own 22 but fail to protect the ball and it’s stolen by Retallick at the breakdown. That gives them tonnes of options, with the Wales defense unprepared for the turnover. Smith ignores options out wide to step once, then twice off his left foot and storm through a tiny gap and over the line despite a despairing tackle by Amos. What a world-class finish – and a fine way to mark his final outing with the All Blacks. Mo’unga converts.

New Zealand full-back Ben Smith goes over.
New Zealand full-back Ben Smith goes over. Photograph: Charly Triballeau / AFP via Getty Images


(min:) Scrum penalty for Wales from referee Wayne Barnes. Patchell finds touch in the right-hand corner. Another good platform for Wales but the line-out is spoiled, there is a knock-on and New Zealand get the put-in at a defensive scrum. Aaron Smith claps excitedly at the decision. This is a good contest and none of these players look to be ‘on the beach’ just yet, so to speak.


Penalty! New Zealand 14 – 10 Wales (Patchell)

Wales rewarded for another bright attacking move into All Blacks ’territory. There are several crunching hits by the New Zealand defenders with Gatland’s men knocking on the door again and moving through the phases extremely well. The penalty comes and Patchell strokes over an easy three-pointer. Just four points in it, and Wales looking more than capable of pulling off a famous win if they keep playing like this. Fans may be wondering where the running rugby was against South Africa in the semi-final.

Rhys Patchell of Wales kicks the penalty.
Rhys Patchell of Wales kicks the penalty. Photograph: Michael Steele / Getty Images


21 min:New Zealand look very dangerous every time they get the ball in hand. They are enjoying the kind of space that was impossible to find in the semi-final against England last week. But Wales aren’t short of attacking threat themselves and after another All Blacks raid, they they try to run it back from their own 22 through scrum-half Tomos Williams.


Try! 18 min: New Zealand – 7 Wales

Sensational score by Hallam Amos. Wales take it through more than 10 phases near the All Blacks’ line. There are some crunching tackles from the All Blacks but Gatland’s men spin the ball left, and instead of using an overlap, Amos dummies and shows Mo’unga a clean pair of heels to sprint over the line. Lovely rugby, and Wales are back in this.

Wales’ Hallam Amos breaks.
Wales’ Hallam Amos breaks. Photograph: Tom Jenkins / The Guardian

And slides over to score for Wales.
And slides over to score for Wales. Photograph: Issei Kato / Reuters


16 min:Wales so nearly over for the try! Josh Adams is fed by Williams after an attacking line-out and he superbly bounces and twists out of a couple of tackles and is stopped just a meter short. Then the ball is carried over the try line but it’s held up, and taken back for a penalty to Wales. They kick to the corner and go through some more phases near the New Zealand line.

Updated (at 5.) am EDT

Try! (min: New Zealand) – 0 Wales (Beauden Barrett)

A yard of space is all they need. The All Blacks move into the Welsh 22, Smith collects from a ruck, then sees Barrett running a perceptive diagonal line to the inside. Smith off-loads and Barrett charges through the gap and under the posts. Mo’unga adds the conversion. Brilliantly worked try but perhaps a little soft from a defensive point of view.

Beauden Barrett of New Zealand runs in to score their second try.
Beauden Barrett of New Zealand runs in to score their second try. Photograph: Tom Jenkins / The Guardian


11 min:The New Zealand scrum is under huge pressure at the first engagement, around halfway. But their No 9 Aaron Smith collects the ball and charges down the left wing …

8 min:Wales now have a bash at the other end . Tomos Williams has a dart on the right, before the ball is moved back left, and James Davies does brilliantly to mop up a loose pass and keep the move going. But the All Blacks eventually repel the danger.

Try! New Zealand 7-0 Wales (Moody)

The All Blacks ’loose head prop with the first try! They shrug off that early missed penalty by Mo’unga as Retallick collects a good off-load and bursts into the 22 with a lovely step off his left foot. He then sees Moody on his right shoulder and sends him clear with a clinical pass. Moody sprints beyond the cover and dives over for the first score. Mo’unga converts. We’ve seen both teams willing to run the ball early on and the signs are good for a memorable match!

New Zealand’s Joe Moody runs in to score the opening try.
New Zealand’s Joe Moody runs in to score the opening try. Photograph: Tom Jenkins / The Guardian

Updated (at 5.) am EDT

4 min:New Zealand win a very kickable penalty through their first attack, but Richie Mo’unga misses it from a center-right position.

Updated (at 5.) am EDT

1 min:New Zealand kick their first possession back to their opponents, and Wales immediately cause them problems, Patchell with a beautiful reverse off-load to Adams, who storms into space on the right behind the defensive line as a big gap opens up. But New Zealand win a penalty at the resulting breakdown and the danger is cleared.

Josh Adams breaks.
Josh Adams breaks. Photograph: James Crombie / INPHO / Shutterstock


A few pre-match thoughtsfrom Don E, in Sydney , on email: “Great to see the stadium full. Two proud rugby nations are going to play their hearts out. I think the NZ nation is hurting more and their team will seek to give them hope. ”

Haka time.
Haka time. Photograph: Anne-Christine Poujoulat / AFP via Getty Images

Updated (at 5.) am EDT

Before the anthems, a moment of silence for the victims of Typhoon Hagibis.

Rugby World Cup(@ rugbyworldcup)

A moment of silence at Tokyo Stadium as a symbol of the global rugby family’s solidarity with Japan in the wake of Typhoon Hagibis, which claimed more than 70 lives.#NZLvWAL# RWC

November 1, 2019

Well, this is sweet.A letter to Wales from Tomoko , a Japanese fan who has followed the team around Japan with her two sons since they arrived in Kitakyushu. “Thank you for giving me a dream … please not be injured.”

Welsh Rugby Union ***(@ WelshRugbyUnion)

An example of just how much the people of Japan have made# RWC 2019an unforgettable tournament.

Tomoko and her sons have followed Wales around the country since we arrived in Kitakyushu almost two months ago.

手紙 あ り が と う ご ざ い ま し た。 心 よ り 感謝 し ま す。 (

November 1, 2019

The teams are walking out on to the pitch, so the anthems and the haka are just moments away … Don’t forget, you can email me or tweet any thoughts on the match – see above for details!

A few words from Steve Hansenbefore kick-off, speaking to ITV:

“There’s a focus on wanting to go out and play well. It’s been a tough week, it’s been different… For us we’re excited by this match, they’ve trained well and I’m proud of the lads. My job this week is to make sure we perform. ”

Sonny Bill Williamsis another player set to sign off from All Blacks duty today.

“The enigmatic but highly influential talisman, who will almost certainly leave New Zealand rugby after Friday night’s bronze medal match in Tokyo, will depart as he started – dividing opinion like no All Black ever has before.”

Here’s Matt McILraith:

After England’s responseto the haka last weekend, will Wales do something different today?

Here’s Eleanor Ainge Roy reporting from New Zealand on the response to how England met the challenge last week:


Is this a meaningless match?Ex-All Black and ITV pundit Sean Fitzpatrick is not having any of that: “It’s easy to have good character when you win all the time. When you don’t win, you’ve got to take it on the chin, you’ve got to pull together. This is a massive game for New Zealand rugby, they need to finish this game on a high. ”

The New Zealand captain, Kieran Read, arrives at the stadium in Tokyo.
The New Zealand captain, Kieran Read, arrives at the stadium in Tokyo. Photograph: Richard Heathcote / World Rugby via Getty Images


Gareth Thomas speaking on ITV:“I’ve played in teams that I felt, ‘We’ve beaten New Zealand’. But you switch off for 10 seconds, and you look at the scoreboard, and suddenly you’re behind. If a Welsh team can beat New Zealand in this era it will push us forward, because that psychological barrier will be gone. “

Kick-off is coming up in less than 30 minutes.

Take some time to read Paul Rees’ preview, in which he mentions that current Japan coach Jamie Joseph is now regarded as in the running to be the next New Zealand coach:

Team news

Hansen makes seven changes to his semi-final team – and it’s not just the coaches signing off from All Blacks’ rugby today. Captain Kieran Read is also retiring, along with Ben Smith and Ryan Crotty, who both start today. Ardie Savea’s injury gives Shannon Frizell a chance to start at No 6.

Injuries have badly hit Gatland’s hopes of Wales’s first win against the All Blacks for 66 years, and he makes nine changes. Hallam Amos is in at full back while the half-backs are Tomos Williams and Rhys Patchell at No 9 and No 10 respectively. Nicky Smith and Dillon Lewis come in to the front row. The ever-inspirational Alun Wyn Jones is captain, in what will surely be his finalRugby World Cupouting.

New Zealand:15 Beauden Barrett; 14 Ben Smith, 13 Ryan Crotty, 12 Sonny Bill Williams, 11 Rieko Ioane; 10 Richie Mo’unga, 9 Aaron Smith; 1 Joe Moody, 2 Dane Coles, 3 Nepo Laulala, 4 Brodie Retallick, 5 Scott Barrett, 6 Shannon Frizell, 7 Sam Cane, 8 Kieran Read (capt.).

Replacements:Liam Coltman, Atu Moli, Angus Ta’avao , Patrick Tuipulotu, Matt Todd, Brad Weber, Anton Lienert-Brown, Jordie Barrett.

Wales:15 Hallam Amos; 14 Owen Lane, 13 Jonathan Davies, 12 Owen Watkin, 11 Josh Adams; 10 Rhys Patchell, 9 Tomos Williams; 1 Nicky Smith, 2 Ken Owens, 3 Dillon Lewis; 4 Adam Beard, 5 Alun Wyn Jones (capt.); 6 Justin Tipuric, 7 James Davies, 8 Ross Moriarty.

Replacements:Elliot Dee, Rhys Carre, Wyn Jones, Jake Ball, Aaron Shingler, Gareth Davies, Dan Biggar, Hadleigh Parkes.



Let’s be honest –neither New Zealand nor Wales wanted to sign off from Japan on these terms, battling for the bronze medal instead of gold. But that doesn’t mean they aren’t here to win. After dispiriting quarter-final defeats last week, motivation may be an issue for some players, but they will also be determined to send off two legendary figures in style.

Both New Zealand and Wales say goodbye to long-serving, legendary coaches today. Steve Hansen is signing off after 16 years of involvement on the All Blacks’ coaching staff, having been head coach since 2011. Meanwhile his compatriot (and honorary Welshman) Warren Gatland will bring the curtain down on 12 years coaching Wales.

These two teams had very different experiences in the semi-finals: New Zealand were comprehensively outplayed by England while Wales came agonisingly close to sealing a place in tomorrow’s final before a late Handré Pollard ended their dream.

With pressure now lifted to a large degree, maybe we will see both teams throw off the shackles today – and throw the ball around like we know they can. It would certainly be a shock to see Wales use the same percentage kicking game employed against Springboks.

Let’s just hope rugby is the winner. Regardless of result, both Hansen and Gatland deserve a fitting send-off. Team news coming right up.


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