Ireland's Rugby World Cup fixtures

With the Rugby World Cup only occurring once every four years, Ireland will be hoping to put the misery of 2007 behind them and make a real impact this time around in New Zealand where their Rugby World Cup fixtures have seen them placed in pool C along with Australia, Italy, Russia and the USA.

2007 doesn't boast many happy memories for Ireland who crashed out early on and failed to even progress past the pool stage of the competition. They were unlucky in many respects to be placed in the appropriately named 'group of death' but still left France feeling as if they underachieved. But 2011 is a new start, and with a new team and their coach in Declan Kidney, Ireland will be hoping to make a real mark in New Zealand this time around.

Ireland have all but completed their preparation ahead of the world cup with just one warm-up fixture remaining as they take on Martin Johnson's England team before flying out to New Zealand. The moment Ireland has been waiting for arrives on the 11th of September when they begin their world cup against the USA at New Plymouth. Although it's a game Ireland should be winning, the opposition shouldn't be underestimated and coach Kidney will be urging his side to start brightly and build early momentum.

Their second game see's Ireland's chances rated as miniscule when they take on the arduous Australian team who will also be looking to fair a lot better than they did four years ago. This game on the 17th of September will be contested at the impressive Auckland stadium which incidentally will be the stadium used for the final on the 23rd of October. Ireland's third game see's them come up against a Russia side in Rotorua on the 25th before they complete their pool C matches against Italy in Dunedin on October 2nd.

In a group in which Ireland fully expect to be qualifying from, Ireland are rated as second favourites for the group with Australia undoubtedly the strongest outfit in pool C. Make sure you follow Ireland every step of the way as they look to make significant progress in this years Rugby World Cup.

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