Rugby World Cup

Wallabies name Petaia and Ashley-Cooper in squad

It comes as 19-year-old young gun Jordan Petaia became the youngest player to be named in a Wallabies World Cup squad, while Tatafu Polota-Nau, Tom Banks, Joe Powell, Nick Phipps, Luke Jones, Tom Robertson, Pete Samu and Jack Maddocks were all left out by the three-man selection panel.

Will Skelton's name also does not feature on the final list, with negotiations and a late bid to get him to a second World Cup never getting out of first gear.

Fiji Rugby names squad for the Rugby World Cup

The team :

Campese Ma’afu

Eroni Mawi

Peni Ravai

Mesulame Dolokoto

Samuela Matavesi

Ratu Vere Vugakoto

Leeroy Atalifo

Manasa Saulo

Kalivati Tawake

Tevita Cavubati

Leone Nakarawa

Api Ratuniyarawa

Tevita Ratuva

Semi Kunatani

Viliame Mata

Mosese Voka

Dominiko Waqaniburotu (Captain)

Peceli Yato

Frank Lomani

Niko Matawalu

Henry Seniloli

Levani Botia

Jale Vatubua

Ben Volavola

Veriniki Goneva

Filipo Nakosi

Rugby World Cup: Fans warned of Japan's deadly brain virus

People making the trip for the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan should consider getting vaccinated against it, if they plan on visiting rural parts of the country, it said.

Over 600,000 international fans are expected to visit Japan, and with just over a month to go until the tournament kicks off, campaigners are trying to raise awareness of the disease which is spread through mosquito bites.

Japanese encephalitis affects approximately 68,000 people worldwide each year, with between 13,600 to 20,400 of reported cases being fatal, according to the World Health Organization.

Tonga in good shape for World Cup

The 'Ikale Tahi could only manage one win over Canada in the last of their three games at the recent Pacific Nations Cup but have three more warm up matches before the world showcase.

Kefu said after a month of training and touring together his players were in good shape.

"We've made some big shifts in terms of weight loss and body fat loss. We also made some huge shifts in terms of intensive running," Kefu said.

"It was important that we get a win considering the last four weeks of training have been pretty tough on the boys."

Manu Samoa climbs up in World Rugby rankings

The Steve Jackson-coached side is currently in 16th place behind Tonga who is currently in 15th.

Samoa recorded its best position back in 2013 when they were ranked 7th before dropping to 17th from last year.

The ‘Ikale Tahi’ Tongan rugby side on the other hand, recorded its best position back in 2011 finishing in top ten and placing in ninth place.

Fiji has currently dropped from eighth to tenth place in the rankings.

The Rugby World Cup will be held from 20 September to 2 November in Japan.

     

Fijians flying towards World Cup

After a win and a loss to the Māori All Blacks in July, Fiji were defeated in their opening game of the PNC by Japan, who went on to win the tournament.

Wins over Canada and Samoa gave Fiji second place, the first time they had failed to claim the title since 2014.

Even though Fiji relinquished the silverware, McKee said it was good build up for September's World Cup in Japan.

"It's been quite an intensive five weeks with the five matches, a large squad and all our trainings," he said.

Barrett still waiting on judiciary, could miss start of World Cup

Barrett was sent off for a dangerous tackle near the end of the first half of the All Blacks 47-26 loss to the Wallabies in the opening Bledisloe Cup clash in Perth.

He'll likely be ruled him out this weekend's Bledisloe Cup decider in Auckland, but he could be slapped with a four week ban, which would rule him out of this week's second Bledisloe test in Auckland, the All Blacks one-off test against Tonga and their first two World Cup pool games.

The SANZAAR foul play committee adjourned last night's hearing pending further evidence.

All Black lock Scott Barrett facing possible ban that puts doubt over his World Cup campaign

The SANZAAR foul play review committee will convene late Sunday afternoon (5pm AEST) by video conference to consider Barrett’s case.

Barrett was sent off just before halftime in a key moment of the Wallabies’ upset 47-26 victory in the series opener at Perth’s Optus Stadium on Saturday night.

He was red-carded by French referee Jerome Garces for an apparent shoulder charge which struck Wallabies skipper Michael Hooper in the back and neck as the All Blacks were desperately defending their line.

Rugby World Cup countdown: 50 days to go

Over 400,000 fans from around the world are expected to descend on Japan during the tournament, beginning in late September and going through to mid November.

It is the first World Cup to be held outside of rugby's traditional heartlands.

Ever since the venue of the final was changed in 2015 after the scrapping of a proposed new national stadium, planning for the World Cup has been mostly smooth.

World Cup venues - Kamaishi, Osaka and Kumagaya - are hosting Japan warm-up matches, which should give organisers a chance to fine-tune their final preparations.

Sonny Bill Williams blasts critics saying he's under pressure to make Rugby World Cup

The midfielder rarely uses Twitter to respond to media stories about him, but Williams was clearly fired up, saying those who say he's under pressure need to 'get their priorities right.'

Williams wrote that playing sport for a living can't be compared to those who are struggling to deal with far bigger problems.

"And for those that say I'm under pressure playing a game that I enjoy," Williams wrote. 

"Get your priorities right. Look at what's going on in the world.