The 2019 Rugby World Cup is set to take place in Australia and this is the first time in Australian rugby’s history that the national team will have not been included in the finalised tournament.
Rugby fans have long been waiting for the country to qualify for a World Cup at some point and they will be very disappointed to see that Australia’s hopes of making the World Cup in 2020 will not be realised, writes James Moyle.
The 2019 World Cup will see the first two nations compete in a round-robin format with the two finalists facing off in a one-off final, as well as the Rugby World Champions.
The quarter-final and semi-final matches will take place at the Aviva Stadium, home to the NRL and the AFL, and the semi-finals will be played at the ANZ Stadium.
In the final the top two teams from each pool will advance to the knockout stages.
Australia’s 2019 World cup qualification is a major disappointment to the nation, as it will leave them without a World Championship match and with no World Cup qualification for the next two years.
The only qualification Australia has to play in 2021 is to win the Rugby Championship in France and they have only won one of those matches in the last 12 years.
It was a disappointing start to the World Rugby 2019 Championship in which Australia won their first round match against New Zealand and then went on to lose to Fiji.
However, the game was a far cry from the World cup finals, where Australia dominated from start to finish and were victorious.
Australia will face Japan in the quarter-finals on February 22, 2021, while France will host South Africa on March 3.
While Australia has no World Championship qualification for 2021, the 2019 Rugby Championship will still give them a chance to play for the 2019 World Championship.
However Australia have to play three matches to be able to qualify, which will see them play three more matches in total over the next three years, from November 2020 to April 2021.
Australian Rugby Football Union (ARFU) president Michael Maguire says the federation is happy with the progress the national side has made since the World Cups finals in 2016 and 2018.
“We have been pleased with the way the national teams have progressed and the progress they have made.
The national side have done really well over the last couple of years, so we are very, very pleased with that,” Maguires said.
Maguires was keen to emphasise that Australia will still have to make some changes to the team ahead of the 2019 tournament, and he said that the team will be prepared to take a step back if it does not qualify.
“We are looking forward to the 2019 competition.
There are some big challenges that we need to overcome, but I can assure you that we are going to make sure that the 2019 National Team is prepared to go back to the same level that it was last year,” Magusire said.