thunderbolt for the Blues and blow of blues for the Japanese

It was yesterday

  • France 19-20 Wales
Captain Guilhem Guirado played his last match with the Blues on Sunday (October 20th) in Oita against the Welsh.
Captain Guilhem Guirado played his last match with the Blues on Sunday (October 20th) in Oita against the Welsh. CHRISTOPHE SIMON / AFP

It was written: as usual, France would lead during the first half and then catch up. As against Scotland during the preparation matches or as in his last opposition to Wales in February.

Supporters of the XV of France would probably have preferred to have no regrets, because the Blues have shown beautiful things, especially in the first period. Mastering her subject, France returned to the locker room by leading nine points (19-10), a lead that should have been more comfortable if the kicks of Romain Ntamack had not finished on the posts twice and if the Blues had been more realistic.

But after the French plume of the first act, Sebastien Vahaamahina dries Aaron Wainwright and the French hopes. The second-line, who until then had a boss match, unmercifully bends the Welsh's jaw and collects a red card (49).e).

The Blues finally crack: at 74eRoss Moriarty scores the Welsh test, inviting Guirado and his friends to pack their bags. Final score: 20-19 and elimination in the quarter-finals of the competition. As in 1991 and in 2015.

Read also Rugby World Cup 2019: terrible blow for the XV of France, eliminated by the Welsh
  • Japan 3-26 South Africa
A short field trip for Luke Thompson and his children in Tokyo on October 20th.
A short field trip for Luke Thompson and his children in Tokyo on October 20th. ODD ANDERSEN / AFP

This team from Japan will have dreamed lovers oval ball. But the underdogs of these quarter-finals have been dreadfully beaten by the South Africans. After a first half that showed hopes of qualification (3-5 in favor of the Springboks), the Brave Blossoms dropped pace, conceding two tries in five minutes (66e and 70e minutes). A logical defeat as the Japanese could not hold the physical challenge imposed by the South Africans.

Eliminated from their World Cup, the Japanese will have dazzled this edition 2019 by their game, between sequences of quick passes and well-thought out kicks. Despite this elimination, Jamie Joseph's players will have proudly won their first qualifying for the finals of a World Cup and created a craze in a country where rugby is clearly not one of the most popular sports. The beginning of a great love story?

It's today

They are far from the chicken stages and their stream of endless matches. If there are no rugby matches on Monday, the curious can fall back on a wonderful Lens-Auxerre football (20 h 45). An opposition that will have the taste of a return to the future and that allows to remember the tasty confrontations that we proposed the Ligue 1 during the 2000s. A match that will also remember our good memory Guy Roux, which has not resulted both clubs during his long coaching career.

It's not good at all

And the big winner of the day is undoubtedly Sébastien Vahaamahina. In the tradition of a Vincent Moscato and his fork – the fact of sticking his fingers in the eyes of an opponent – in full "crunch", the second-line French was illustrated by his blood. The Clermontois came out of nowhere a nudge directly in the jaw of Welsh Aaron Wainwright. There were certainly other ways to make him understand that he did not like his mustache.

It's seen

If the minute of silence was, as always, respected to perfection by the Japanese public, the emotion was also at the rendezvous during the hymns. Not everyone was able to hold back tears, like Japanese scrum half Yutaka Nagare. And if the South Africans have less wet their cheeks, they pushed the voice.

It is said

"The best team lost today. The red card was decisive, of course. But the most important thing today is that our guys did not give up, they continued to work. Tactically, the French have been very intelligent in their way of playing. "

While Warren Gatland praised the performance of his players, the coach of Wales has shown fair play (or honesty is according) highlighting the good French delivery. It does not pay any point, the defeat is still so cruel, but it's still nice for the ego. We take.

It's finish

"It's true, I have sometimes been hard. But the most important thing now is what all these young people will do tomorrow. They showed tonight that they had talent. And I hope that the XV of France has now eaten all his black bread, that tomorrow will be better. "

Guilhem Guirado had announced it: he will retire internationally at the end of this World Cup. After 74 caps, the captain bows out. His captaincy will certainly leave a bitter memory as the Blues have chained disillusionment in recent months. Who will take the armband for years to come?

This match against Wales was also the last of Jacques Brunel at the head of the Blues. But in the case of the coach, the suspense is less on the name of his successor, who should, except surprise, be a certain "assistant like the others".

(That's done

Despite his friendship with Scott Spedding, former international XV of France, Christopher Froome and his son leaned for the Welsh in these quarterfinals. As a good Brit, impossible for him to be behind the Blues? Unless it is to please Geraint Thomas, his teammate at Ineos.



With only eight points scored in the first half (3-5), Japan-South Africa was the first-worst half of the tournament.

Vincent Bresson


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