2023 Rugby World Cup Team – Week 2


Following a less exciting Round 2 of the 2023 Rugby World Cup, we selected a team based on individual performance. As expected Fiji dominates our team with the brilliant performance of All Black, Levani Botia at scrumhalve scoring a top 9/10 after fighting of challenges from several scrumhalves in Round 2.

1. Eroni Mawi (Fiji) - He led the Fijian front row with a high work rate, completing 9 tackles in the first half alone. Produced two big turnovers.

2. Sam Matavesi (Fiji) - Matavesi was one of the best on the field during his 50 minutes. He was critical in a solid Fijian set-piece. Completed his first six throws at the lineout and showed magnificent skill on a lineout play to rip a long pass out to the backs.

3. Luke Tagi (Fiji) - The powerful prop gave Fiji good gain line with four carries. He put in a mammoth effort after being recalled into action. Tagi finished with nine tackles and anchored a strong Fijian scrum & maul throughout his time on.

4 Tadhg Beirne (Ireland) - Settled Ireland with the first try inside the first 20 minutes. Made some huge dents in the Tongan defence with some big ball carries. His lineout defence work was excellent all night. 10 tackles

5. Te Ahiwaru Cirikidaveta (Fiji) - Involved in the dirty work with plenty of cleanouts and tackles. Finished with 10 tackles.

6. Courtney Lawes (England) - His presence was defining as he scored the decisive try on 56 minutes.

7. Levani Botia (Fiji) - Ever-present at the breakdown, competing hard for Fiji both on attack and defence as he was everywhere. Finished with 14 tackles and three turnovers won after a demolition job on Australia.

8 Taulupe Faletau (Wales) - Made some brilliant tackles and scored the bonus point try at the death. A strong performance from the veteran who remains a crucial cog in this Welsh machine.

9. Cam Roigard(All Blacks) - Couldn’t ask for much more in his starting debut for the All Blacks as he scored the first two tries of the night.

10 Johnny Sexton (Ireland) - Became Ireland’s leading points scorer with a stunning try. Dictated much of what was good about what Ireland did in the first 40 minutes.

11 Makazole Mapimpi (Springboks) - Mapimpi really showed his deadly finishing skills, scoring a hat-trick of tries.

12 Bundee Aki (Ireland) - Another world-class performance by Aki. His excellent running lines caused Tonga problems all night. Scored 2 tries & 10 defenders were beaten.

13. Waisea Nayacalevu (Fiji) - Didn’t get much quality ball in the first half. Was strong defensively when needed, looking to hold up Wallaby runners and force collapsed mauls.

14 – Louis Rees-Zammit (Wales) - An outstanding bit of skill set up his own try. A clean catch and a quick grubber ahead meant he created the space behind the Portugal defensive line. He then put the afterburners on and gathered on the bounce to score.

15 Willie le Roux (Springboks) - Aside from his horrendous knock-on in the first half and forward pass in the second, the fullback was solid at the back. He was a try-assist maestro, setting up a couple of tries, including a hattrick for Makazola Mampimpi.