Commonwealth of rugby

Welsh rugby player flying over the line

It’s been nice to see the colonies playing so well today at the Rugby World Cup. New Zealand, Australia, Canada, Fiji, Wales and Scotland — six out of the eight sides playing today — are all members of the Commonwealth of Nations.

  • New Zealand beat Romania ( 85 – 8 )

    Good effort to Romania who scored eight more points than Scotland did against the All Blacks last weekend.

  • Australia beat Canada ( 37 – 6 )

    Australia’s victory wasn’t quite as decisive as I’d hoped, play was sloppy in places, given that they face England next week. That said they were siding a second team, so resting their main players is probably a good tactic: England must be beaten!

  • Fiji beat Wales ( 38 – 34 )

    I found this an inspiring game to watch. The first half was all about Fiji: what power and a display of some beautiful passages of rugby. The second half was all about Wales, returning from the half-time break by running in three tries.

    But then Fiji powered over to a final try within the last four minutes. I’m not ashamed to say that I had tears in my eyes at the end of this match — sad that Wales would be leaving the World Cup, but delighted for Fiji who played like giants today.

But what of tonight’s game: Scotland v Italy. Scotland need at least a draw to go through to the quarter finals, where they will face the winner of Pool D (is there any doubt that this will be Argentina?). I wait nervously for the match to begin.

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Gareth Saunders

I’m Gareth J M Saunders, 52 years old, 6′ 4″, father of 3 boys (including twins). Enneagram type FOUR and introvert (INFP), I am a non-stipendiary priest in the Scottish Episcopal Church, I sing with the NYCGB alumni choir, play guitar, play mahjong, write, draw and laugh… Scrum master at Safeguard Global; latterly at Sky and Vision/Cegedim. Former web architect and agile project manager at the University of St Andrews and previously warden at Agnes Blackadder Hall.

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