Gregan: Australia should embrace Pool A challenge

George Gregan

Former Australia captain George Gregan has said that the Wallabies should be
welcoming being in Pool A rather than fearing it at the Rugby World Cup.

Australia Wallabies have been pooled with Rugby World Cup hosts England, Wales,
Pacific Nations Cup holders Fiji and Uruguay.

The top two teams from each pool will progres to the knock out stage so the
Pool has been called the Pool of Death as one of the top five teams in the World
rankings won’t even reach the play offs.

World Rugby Rankings

1.NZL
2.AUS
3.RSA
4.ENG
5.WAL

Rugby World Cup winner Gregan says that instead of fearing Pool A Australia
should embrace it as it gives the team a chance to find form and get used to
playing under pressure before the knockout stages of the tournament.

“It’s a tough one, but rather than looking at it as a ‘Pool of Death’
I see it as a ‘Pool of Opportunity’ for Australia,” he told 7Days.

“Everyone is talking about Wales and England, but Fiji will be a really
difficult game as they have some real quality. “

“But you get through that pool where you will play some really tough
games and it sets you up for when the tournament really starts, which is from
the quarter-finals onwards.”

Gregan believes that Australia can win the Rugby World Cup if they can finish
on top of Pool A which is expected to set up a quarter final clash against Scotland
if the world rankings are followed.

“If they (Australia) top their pool and get through the quarter-finals,
then they are certainly on the side of the draw that gives them a good run at
the final,” he added.

Scotland are in Pool B with South Africa, Samoa, Japan and the USA.

Gregan said that he expects France and New Zealand to bring a tough challenge
to the Rugby World Cup in England.

“The (French) team have lacked consistency over the last five or so years,
but they can beat anyone on their day.”

“France always seem to get things right in the final stages and of course
you always expect New Zealand to be there.

“So Australia need that consistency as history has taught us that there
will be an upset in the knockout stages and I don’t think it will be any
different in England.”

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