"France opener" - England get tough group in revised Rugby World Cup draw - Ruck

“France opener” – England get tough group in revised Rugby World Cup draw

If the draw for the Rugby World Cup were conducted at this moment, England would find themselves in the challenging position of squaring off against France in the inaugural match of the tournament.

The evident disparity highlighted by the most recent World Rugby Rankings underscores the perplexing nature of the Pool Draw. The fact that these pools are determined a full three years prior to the actual tournament, set to kick off in September, appears remarkably skewed and imbalanced.

World Rugby has already confirmed they will hold the pool draws for future Rugby World Cups at a later date, closer to the kick-off of upcoming tournaments.

This comes after criticism that the draws were taking place far too early, with world rankings at the time of the draw playing a crucial role in the teams’ seedings.

World Rugby will shake the pool draw up ahead of 2027 tournament to ensure more balances pools.

“The reason why the pool draws were made earlier was because of the surety of the host cities and knowing where teams were going, which is very important,” said Chairman of World rugby Bill Beaumont.

“The need for certainty and stability in the planning process influenced the decision to conduct the draw early”.

Nevertheless, Sir Bill Beaumont insisted that they will be making the draw for the 2027 edition in Australia as late as possible.


“What we will be doing is looking to have the pool draw as late as possible so that you get more consistency around the balance in a pool.

“The goal is to achieve a fairer distribution of teams within each pool, reducing potential disparities.

“When we go to Australia, we will be looking at how late we can make the pool draw.”

POOL A actual draw:

  • New Zealand (4)
  • France (3)
  • Italy (13)
  • Uruguay (17)
  • Namibia (21)

POOL A up to date draw

  • South Africa (2)
  • Fiji (7)
  • Japan (14)
  • Uruguay (17)
  • Namibia (21)