England take on Chile in round three of the Rugby World Cup this Saturday, in what is expected to be a routine victory for Steve Borthwick’s men. Chile are currently competing at their first ever Rugby World Cup, and have struggled to find the same form that earned them the qualifying spot.
Los Condores were soundly beaten by Japan (42-12) and Samoa (43-10) in the first two rounds of action, with their opponents so far being able to deal with their element of surprise. England fans will be excited to see if their side can record a historic points tally against Chile, and break their record for a Rugby World Cup winning margin.
However, the Rugby World Cup is a competition that has seen plenty of upsets in the past. A Chile victory would certainly be the most ultimate of upsets, yet it truly is an unlikely outcome. The current betting odds for those who like to gamble, put Chile at a 100/1 (1%) chance of beating England (Boylesports).
So with that, we could be on the verge of a new England Rugby World Cup record, if Borthwick’s men hit top gear in Lille tomorrow.
Here are England’s five biggest winning margins, in Rugby World Cup matches.
5. England 67 – 7 Italy (60 Points) – 1999 Rugby World Cup Pool B
October 2nd 1999, Twickenham Stadium, London
England’s fifth highest points tally at a Rugby World Cup came against Italy, with this being the only entry on this list against a modern day ‘tier one’ rugby nation. However, at the time, Italy were in the midst of a progressive push of acceptance into the Five Nations, with this England victory supplying the naysayers with ammunition against the Azzurri’s worthiness.
Taking place on the tournament’s opening weekend, a packed house at the stadium known as ‘HQ’, witnessed England run riot against Italy. England ran in eight tries, with Jonny Wilkinson getting the scoring underway. The Newcastle Falcons fly-half also excelled on the tee today, as he added 27 points from the boot to build the ever-increasing score-line. Italy had a long way to go before they joined the Six Nations, and this was not even their biggest defeat at the 1999 Rugby World Cup.
The Italians ran into the All Blacks in the third round of Pool B, and took a hammering 101-3 defeat. That loss ranks amongst the heaviest ever score-lines in Rugby World Cup history. England went on to record another memorable triumph, with more on their Pacific Island pool stage clash to come in this article. Thankfully, despite the recent results, the Six Nations did expand to include Italy, with the Azzurri building into an exciting and unpredictable underdog in the competition’s 23-year history.
TRIES: 8 (Jonny Wilkinson, Richard Hill, Daniel Luger, Neil Back, Phillip De Glanville, Martin Corry, Matt Dawson, Matt Perry)
CONVERSIONS: 6 (Jonny Wilkinson)
PENALTIES: 5 (Jonny Wilkinson)
4. England 67 – 3 Romania (64 Points) – 2011 Rugby World Cup Pool B
September 24th 2011, Otago Stadium, Dunedin
The most recent instalment on this list, and the only fixture to feature England players that are still amongst the squad today. The likes of Ben Youngs, Dan Cole and Manu Tuilagi were in Martin Johnson’s side that recorded England’s fourth biggest Rugby World Cup victory, 12 years ago against Romania. However, this trio miss out on the opportunity to rack-up a record England win this weekend against Chile, as Steve Borthwick has left the three veterans out of the match-day squad of 23.
So, we re-wind back to New Zealand, 2011, and England’s first pool stage match saw them scrape a win against Argentina, thanks to the late World Cup debut try of Ben Youngs. What followed was a comfortable 41-10 thrashing of Georgia, with fellow Eastern Europeans Romania the next side in line. after a brief quarter of an hour’s arm-wrestle, Mark Cueto crossed over for England’s first try of the match. This was the first of a magnificent hat-trick for the Sale Sharks stalwart, with Chris Ashton also scoring a trio of tries against the depleted opponents.
In total, England ran in a perfect 10 tries, however Jonny Wilkinson and Toby Flood’s missed conversions left a few points out on the pitch. Both Tuilagi and Youngs scored in this fixture, with the long-serving England legends presenting their career longevity at the Rugby World Cup. There was little out of the ordinary for this comfortable England victory, as captain Lewis Moody bowed out after 62 minutes with the win secured.
TRIES: 10 (Mark Cueto (3), Chris Ashton (3), Ben Youngs, Ben Foden, Manu Tuilagi, Tom Croft)
CONVERSIONS: 7 (Jonny Wilkinson 3, Toby Flood 4)
PENALTIES: 1 (Wilkinson)