Who are the rugby nations to look out for in the World Cup?

Finally, the Rugby World Cup has kicked off and there's never been a more open tournament in the history of the game. At least six rugby nations stand a realistic chance of lifting the Webb Ellis Cup at the end of the tournament and the competition has got the fans salivating over the prospect.

New Zealand

The host nation is a formidable rugby team and most people's favourite for the competition. Unbelievably, the All Blacks have not won the World Cup since the inaugural tournament way back in 1987. However, they'll be determined to put that right this time around, and in front of a fervent home crowd, it's going to take an almighty effort to knock them out of the competition.

Star Player: Dan Carter


Australians are sports mad and playing the World Cup in their neighbour's territory will give them all the motivation they need to win it. They certainly have the pedigree to win the competition, having been victorious in 1991 and 1999.

Star Player: Quade Cooper

South Africa

The current holders of the World Cup, South Africa are a dynamic team with tons of flair players that allow them to play a breath-taking brand of rugby.

Star Player: Fourie du Preez


Nobody can deny that England have a habit of peaking at World Cups, having made the final in 2007 and lifting the trophy in 2003. An extremely dangerous team to write off.

Star Player: Ben Young's


Capable of playing some of the most attractive rugby on the planet, the French will be desperate to lift the trophy that has so far eluded them. They'll be hoping the heartbreak of being runners up in 1987 and 1999 will spur them on to a maiden victory.

Star Player: Vincent Clerc



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