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October 31, 2019
Rest 2011

Here we look at four possible scenarios that would see Lancaster's men qualify as one of the top two teams in the group.

First things first, here is how the table currently looks in its complete form:

P
W
D
L
F
A
BP
P
1
Wales
3
3
0
0
105
47
1
13
2
Australia
2
2
0
0
82
34
1
9
3
England
2
1
0
1
60
39
2
6
4
Fiji
3
0
0
3
37
86
0
0
5
Uruguay
2
0
0
2
12
119
0
0

England are now seven points behind Wales, after the latter's hard-fought 23-13 win over Fiji on Thursday night, and still three behind Australia. But keep an eye on that bonus point column - it could prove key.

Scenario 1 - Wales come up short

Right, after Wales beat Fiji but failed to get the bonus point on Thursday evening, next up is the big one. England v Australia! Lancaster's men need to win. And in this scenario we think they will. But it will be close and Australia will get a losing bonus point. Below is how the (abbreviated) table would look:

P
W
D
L
BP
P
1
Wales
3
3
0
0
1
13
2
Australia
3
2
0
1
2
10
3
England
3
2
0
1
2
10

Another huge game follows - Wales v Australia. Now normally you'd back the team leading the group, ie the Welsh. But Wales' record against the Wallabies is abysmal - they've lost their last 10 internationals against the men in green and gold - and so we are going with history. Australia will win but, again, it will be close and Wales will pick up a losing bonus point.

P
W
D
L
BP
P
1
Australia
4
3
0
1
2
14
2
Wales
4
3
0
1
2
14
3
England
3
2
0
1
2
10

And now the final game of the group - and the five-point banker. England v Uruguay. The Uruguayans are the whipping boys of the pool and even the most ardent Welshman or Australian would be hard-pressed to suggest England won't pick up a try bonus point. If Wales and Australia did it, we have to assume England will too.

P
W
D
L
BP
P
1
England
4
3
0
1
3
15
2
Australia
4
3
0
1
2
14
3
Wales
4
3
0
1
2
14

So England march on with Australia and Wales are sent home because, according to the rules, the first criteria for separating two teams on the same points is: 'The winner of the match in which the two tied teams have played each other shall be the higher ranked'. And, in this scenario, the Aussies beat the Welsh. Their inability to claim a try bonus point against Fiji in Cardiff ultimately proving very costly.

Scenario 2 - Bye bye Australia

What, we hear you ask, would happen if Wales were to beat the Aussies? Well, this is our next scenario.

England will (have to) beat Australia on Saturday. As in Scenario 1, no try bonus point for England, but a losing BP for the Aussies. After all, we're trying to be as objective as possible.

P
W
D
L
BP
P
1
Wales
3
3
0
0
1
13
2
Australia
3
2
0
1
2
10
3
England
3
2
0
1
2
10

Now this is where we go in the face of history and suggest the Welsh, full of confidence if not a little battered and bruised, will end their losing run against the Wallabies. It will be tight, though. For the sake of arguement, as this match is too close to call, no try bonus point for the men in red, but another losing BP for the Aussies.

P
W
D
L
BP
P
1
Wales
4
4
0
0
1
17
2
Australia
4
2
0
2
3
11
3
England
3
2
0
1
2
10

All of which means that the Aussies are going home as England will stuff Uruguay in their final game and claim the maximum five points. And, to be honest, even if they don't and only score four, Lancaster's boys will still finish second and progress.

P
W
D
L
BP
P
1
Wales
4
4
0
0
1
17
2
England
4
3
0
1
3
15
3
Australia
4
2
0
2
3
11

Scenario 3 - Out of English hands

So far we haven't had any draws. But what if England could only draw with Australia. Can they still progress? Let's find out. After a titanic battle, England and Australia can't be separated.

P
W
D
L
BP
P
1
Wales
3
3
0
0
1
13
2
Australia
3
2
1
0
1
11
3
England
3
1
1
1
2
8

At this stage England seem all but out. They really need a massive favour from Wales. Gatland's men MUST beat the Aussies, or at least draw with them. If they lose, England crash out. So let's say Wales win and Australia get a losing bonus point.

P
W
D
L
BP
P
1
Wales
4
4
0
0
1
17
2
Australia
4
2
1
1
2
12
3
England
3
1
1
1
2
8

It all comes down to whether or not England can get that try bonus point against Uruguay. Which they should. And the final table would look like this:

P
W
D
L
BP
P
1
Wales
4
4
0
0
1
17
2
England
4
2
1
1
2
13
3
Australia
4
2
1
1
3
12

Scenario 4 - Luck of the draw

We mentioned in Scenario 3 how, if England draw with Australia, Wales must also AT LEAST draw with the Wallabies to give Lancaster's men a lifeline. And this is worth investigating.

So, England draw with Australia and the table looks like this:

P
W
D
L
BP
P
1
Wales
3
3
0
0
1
13
2
Australia
3
2
1
0
1
11
3
England
3
1
1
1
2
8

Draws in rugby are rare but, when too evenly-matched teams are involved, it can happen. Twice in a row is, admittedly, unlikely, but you can never say never. So what if Wales then also draw with the Aussies.

P
W
D
L
BP
P
1
Wales
4
3
1
0
1
15
2
Australia
4
2
2
0
1
13
3
England
3
1
1
1
2
8

It means England go into their clash with Uruguay needing the maximum five points. However, this will only bring them level with the Wallabies on 13. And the rule that states that the team that won when the two sides level on points played goes through is irrelevent as, in this scenario, they drew.

The next criteria for having a winner is points difference. This will be close. But as England will go into their clash with Uruguay knowing exactly how many points they need to beat the minnows by to ensure they have a better points difference than Australia, we have to make England favourites and put them through.

P
W
D
L
BP
P
1
Wales
4
3
1
0
1
15
2
England
4
2
1
1
2
13
3
Australia
4
2
2
0
1
13

There are of course a whole load of other potential scenarios when bonus points are involved, but the above four cover the main talking points. One thing is certain - regardless of Scenarios 3 or 4 - England must beat the Aussies if their destiny is to remain in their own hands.

Source: www.telegraph.co.uk
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