Chile have qualified for the first time in their history for the Rugby World Cup, which will be played in France in 2023, after a stunning victory against…
Chile qualified for the first time in its history for the Rugby World Cup, which will be played in France in 2023, after a stunning victory against the United States 31-29, Saturday in Glendale (Colorado).
The vulnerability of Santiago Videla in the 75th minute gave the “Condores” the advantage for the first time in the game, thus sealing the qualification of the Chileans, after the small victory of the Americans (22-21) last weekend in Santiago, in the first leg.
“It’s so strong… the sacrifices this team made. There were times when it seemed impossible,” said Chilean captain Martín Sigren.
Chile secures a place in Group D of the French World Cup with England, Argentina, Japan and Samoa, at the expense of the United States, which had only missed the 1995 edition of the FIFA World Cup. world, in South Africa.
All is not lost for the “Eagles”, who can still go to France in 2023 thanks to a final qualification tournament which will be played at the end of the year. Four teams (the United States, Portugal, Kenya and Hong Kong or Tonga) will compete for the last ticket to France.
“It’s heartbreaking,” said US captain AJ MacGinty. “We gave a lot (…), especially in the first half. (…) But the credit goes to Chile. We totally controlled them in the first half. I saw them under their posts, and their gaze was lost, but they fought and it’s to their credit.”
Everything had started well for the Americans, however, who dominated 19-0 after 31 minutes of play, after two tries from Martin Iosefo, transformed by captain AJ MacGinty, who also scored a try.
But the Chileans took advantage of the temporary exclusion of Nick Civetta in the 32nd minute to score two tries (Marcelo Torrealba in the 35th and Matias Garafulic in the 39th), with conversions from Santiago Videla, to come back to 19-14 at the half time.
Returning from the locker room, Joe Taufete’e, former LOU hooker, scored a try in the 48th, converted by MacGinty. The “Condores” responded in the wake of the 51st, with a try and a transformation from Videla, returning to 26-21.
MacGinty scored a sensitivity in the 58th, but Chile responded with a try from Matias Dittus in the 65th. Videla’s conversion saw the visitors close at 29-28. And Videla’s final penalty in the 75th minute then sent the “Condores” to France and the “Eagles” to the ground.