Curtain set to rise on rugby’s biggest bash

The smart money’s on New Zealand but anything can happen in this titanic contest of nations

6th September, 2015
Paul O’Connell: Ireland’s talismanic second-row will be appearing in his fourth and final World Cup Picture: INPHO

Twelve days to go. Then it starts. Finally. Teams have been waiting four years. For the last eight weeks, they have all been locked in camp for unbroken pre-season training. This is one of the great nuances of the Rugby World Cup – everybody has the same preparation time, and the guts of each squad have been together without the distraction of club competition getting in the way.

The final squads of 31 have been...

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