England and South Africa meet for latest chapter of full-blooded rivalry in Paris
In 2018, a tackle by Owen Farrell on André Esterhuizen caused division in the rugby community. With Farrell not given a penalty, England defeated South Africa 12–11.
England vs. South Africa in the World Cup semifinal of rugby. Where: Paris, the Stade de France. When: 8 a.m. on Sunday (NZT).Coverage: Watch on Stuff from 9:30 am, and get live updates on Stuff from 7 am on Sky Sport 1.
Having destroyed the All Blacks in a historic semifinal victory in Tokyo, England entered the most recent Rugby World Cup final against South Africa as the favorites.
Looking back, that idea might have been dumb.
For the third time in as many years, the Springboks won the Webb Ellis Cup in Japan in 2019. In their fourth World Cup final, Eddie Jones’ England suffered their third defeat.
For the English, nothing went as planned. Under their eccentric coach Rassie Erasmus, South Africa’s scrum, “bomb squad,” bruising defence, and overwhelming physical supremacy set the stage for a 32–12 victory. During the 2019 Rugby World Cup final in Tokyo, Cheslin Kolbe of South Africa skidded past the English defense for one of their tries.
Their recent past has sparked a robust, interesting, and fierce competition between them. Although it doesn’t have the same historical significance as South Africa’s victory over the All Blacks or the authentic tribalism of the Six Nations, it is nevertheless one of the most pure contest in the modern game.
The rugby world has been affected by the fallout from their rigorous tests. Close races and disputes have been frequent.
Following their 12-11 victory at Twickenham in 2018, England captain Owen Farrell’s tackle technique was the talk of the team and sparked a heated debate regarding risky tackles.
Although Farrell’s knock on André Esterhuizen with his shoulder appeared high and there were doubts about his attempt to wrap his arms in the tackle, Australian referee Angus Gardner was satisfied that there was no foul play and that South Africa was denied a chance to win the game with the last play.
A few months prior, following a run of six straight losses and a 2-1 series defeat to South Africa, who won 42-39 and 23-12 before England won a dead rubber 25-10, former coach Jones was fired. They were wild, frenetic tests.
Following his survival, Jones guided England to the World Cup final in the subsequent year. When they played again in London in 2021, they prevailed 27–26, but the Springboks broke his seven-year rule last November with a 27–13 victory at Twickenham. Before rejoining the Wallabies, Jones faced his last test as England’s coach. (which has been disastrous with Australia not getting out of their World Cup pool in France).
Their most recent meeting in Paris takes place just hours before England and South Africa’s pivotal pool match in cricket’s premier tournament in India is scheduled to conclude. This match is part of another significant World Cup match between the two nations. Eddie Jones, the England coach at the time, leaving the Webb Ellis Cup behind following their 2019 loss.
Saturday (local time) could be a long, nervous day for sports fans in each nation, with so much riding on each match, although cricket and rugby have greater prominence in South Africa than in England.
With the Premier League returning this weekend after an international break and the cherished lower leagues beginning in full, more English fans will be more invested in the success of their particular football teams.
While events in Paris and Mumbai will pique the interest of a tiny portion of English football’s fervent fan base, South Africa is more obsessed with the Springboks and Proteas.
Throughout the Rugby World Cup’s history, South Africa and England have also been entwined. They will play each other in the event for the fourth time this coming weekend in Paris.
The first five-eighth of South Africa England defeated the Boks on their way to winning the 2003 World Cup in Australia, and they notably faced each other again in the French capital in 2007. Jannie de Beer’s five drop goals eliminated England from the 1999 World Cup quarterfinals in Paris.
In the pool stage, the Springboks crushed them 36-0, and they won the final 15-6 to win their second global championship. Mark Cueto’s no-try in the second half, when it was determined that he had grazed the touchline with his toes, may have angered English supporters.
This time, another story will take place at Le Stade de France.