Farrell Sends England Into World Cup Semi-finals With Fiji Win
Faizan Hashmi Published October 15, 2023 | 10:50 PM
Marseille, (APP - UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 15th Oct, 2023) Owen Farrell scored a late drop goal and penalty on Sunday to send England into the Rugby World Cup semi-finals with a tense and nervy 30-24 victory over Fiji.
That denied Fiji the chance to make history and a first-ever last-four appearance as they fell at the quarter-final stage for the third time.
It was a fierce opening to the game, with Fiji's famed tacklers to the fore, winning a couple of early turnovers.
But it was after England's first turnover, claimed by Courtney Lawes, that Farrell was able to kick a simple penalty from under the posts.
Farrell kicked England's next penalty to the corner and while Fiji held up the initial catch and drive, Tuilagi burst around the blindside to power through two tacklers, twist and stretch his arm over the line to score one-handed.
Lomani did not miss his next chance, though, after a no-arms tackle from Tom Curry and England led 8-3 after the first quarter.
The match seemed to have taken a decisive turn in 24 minutes as England poured forward, with Marchant stepping inside despite an overlap to score a second try.
In the build-up, though, Vinaya Habosi made head-on-head contact with Marcus Smith in the tackle and he was shown a yellow card.
Yet the 14 men rallied.
Lomani missed a second penalty but soon after Fiji struck back as a clever pass through his legs by fly-half Botitu set up No.8 Mata to sell a dummy and dart over.
Although they were outscored with a numerical advantage, England soon wrestled back control and two more Farrell penalties gave them a 21-10 lead at the break.
- Flying Fijians come alive -
The second half turned into a war of attrition and became increasingly scrappy and fractious, with the two teams' openside flankers, Curry and Levani Botia, almost coming to blows at one stage.
Farrell kicked a penalty and then saw a long-range effort come up just short.
But the game came alive on 64 minutes when replacement prop Ravai hit a perfect line onto Simione Kuruvoli's pass to blast over and score.
Kuruvoli's conversion levelled the scores at 24-24.