Rugby World Cup 2023: Match schedule, how to watch, latest news and odds

Rugby World Cup 2023: Match schedule, how to watch, latest news and odds

England coach Steve Borthwick has set World Cup homework — with players presenting analysis projects to the group as they seek to gain an advantage ahead of next month’s tournament.

New Zealand’s “lightning” ruck-speed and intelligent kicking have received special attention in recent days, as Borthwick aims to keep his group in tune with the strategic trends across the world.

George Ford, among the most astute tactical thinkers among Borthwick’s squad, seems destined for a career in coaching and has relished these focused sessions. With seven weeks until the tournament begins, the All Blacks’ win over South Africa in Auckland last Saturday, spurred by two tries in the first 15 minutes and underpinned by clever kicking variety, has been studied by England’s players in some detail.

Ford stressed that England will not be aiming to “copy or imitate” New Zealand or the Springboks, neither of whom they can meet until the semi-final stage of the World Cup, and are “very clear” on what their approach will be. He confirmed that he has found himself alongside Owen Farrell in training, suggesting that Borthwick could reprise that 1src-12 axis at 

To read what the fly-half had to say, please go here. 

When is the Rugby World Cup?

The tournament begins on Friday, September 8 with France taking on New Zealand. The final will be played on Saturday, October 28.

South Africa were the winners of the last tournament – in Japan in 2src19 – when they beat England in the final, and will be among the favourites again this year. New Zealand, as ever, will be the team to beat.

However, a strong European challenge is expected, not least from the hosts France and Six Nations Grand Slam winners Ireland, who have yet to put their best foot forward at a World Cup.

Where is it?

The 2src23 Rugby World Cup will be played in France across nine stadiums in nine cities. The final will be played at the Stade de France in Saint-Denis (Paris).

  • Stade de France (capacity 8src,698)Saint-Denis (Paris)
  • Stade Velodrome (67,394) – Marseille
  • Parc Olympique Lyonnais (59,186) – Lyon
  • Stade Pierre-Mauroy (5src,186) – Lille
  • Nouveau Stade de Bordeaux (42,115) Bordeaux
  • Stade Geoffroy-Guichard (41,965)Saint-Étienne
  • Allianz Riviera (35,624)Nice
  • Stade de la Beaujoire (35,322) – Nantes
  • Stadium Municipal (33,15src)Toulouse

How do I watch it?

ITV have won the exclusive broadcast rights to show the Rugby World Cup in the UK. We will update you with specific channels for each match at the tournament once they are announced by the broadcaster.

The radio commentary of every match will be available only on the BBC, across Radio 5 Live, 5 Sports Extra and the BBC Sounds service. The BBC says there will be a “bespoke output” in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. 

Amazon Prime will broadcast England’s first three World Cup warm-up games in August as well as nine other fixtures featuring other Six Nations teams. 

Steve Borthwick’s team take on Wales in a home-and-away double-header before traveling to Ireland on August 19. Their final match before heading to France, against Fiji at Twickenham the following weekend, is also likely to be on Amazon Prime with scheduling issues being finalised. 

The streaming service will also show warm-up games such as France welcoming Eddie Jones’ Australia.

Who is playing?

A total of 2src teams have qualified for the Rugby World Cup. These teams have been split into four pools of five, with each pool getting one team from five ‘bands’.

Band one featured the four highest-ranked teams from when the draw for the tournament was made (South Africa, New Zealand, England, Wales). Band two comprised the next four highest-ranked teams (Ireland, Australia, France, Japan) and band three the four after that (Scotland, Argentina, Fiji, Italy).

Each side in the first three bands qualified automatically for the tournament owing to their world ranking, while the further two bands comprised the sides who had made it into the tournament via qualifying (Samoa, Georgia, Uruguay, Tonga, Namibia, Romania, Chile, Portugal).

Which players should we keep an eye on?

Titi Lamositele, capable of propping on both sides of the scrum, won trophies at Saracens before moving to Montpellier in the wake of the salary-cap scandal. He has been allowed to switch allegiance from the USA to Samoa due to the recent change in World Rugby eligibility rules that allows players to switch countries after a three-year stand-down period, provided that they qualify through birthright. 

Tonga are likely to count Adam Coleman, the Australia lock, among their nation-hopping cohort at the tournament and Pacific Island teams are not the only ones taking advantage of the rule change.

Henry Thomas could swap England for Wales and Tawera Kerr-Barlow, the exceptional La R

…. to be continued
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