Ireland started their World Cup campaign with an all-round victory over Scotland on Sunday. The Irish were dominant in their 27-3 victory, and looked like a team that has worked hard on the issues that were worrying them leading up to the World Cup.
The Rugby World Cup kicks off on Friday, and this year promises to be one of the most competitive and exciting tournaments ever. Realistically, any one of four top teams could win it, with other dark horses also capable of pulling off a few big wins. As difficult as it is to predict the World Cup in Japan, let's take a look at it anyway...
A few days away from the start of the greatest rugby showcase in Japan, and many pundits and fans alike have mixed feelings about Ireland's prospects of winning the World Cup. After moving to World No. 1 after defeating Wales in Dublin in their final warm-up match, the Irish should be firm favourites to win. However, many pundits feel that Ireland will fall to their quarter-final curse, while others believe that they do not have the right personnel in the 31-man squad.
This weekend will see the final preparation matches ahead of the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan at the end of September. One of the most influential matches of the weekend will take place in Dublin, as Ireland and Wales will clash in their second match in two weeks; a match which can have great ramifications for the much debated official World Rankings.