Epic World Cup Rugby quarterfinals: Shocking upsets, unforgettable showdowns

What a rugby spectacle we were treated to over the weekend at the Stade de France!

It felt as though we were watching not one, but two World Cup finals, true classics of the sport.

In a heart-pounding clash, South Africa’s Springboks secured their place in the semifinals with a nail-biting 29-28 victory over France. The 80,000-strong crowd will forever remember the sheer thrill of witnessing a match that may well be one of the greatest rugby contests ever played.

The charged-down conversion by Cheslin Kolbe from South Africa on Thomas Ramos from France during the first half proved to be a turning point.

Those two extra points could have sent France into the semis, and this rare feat of a successful charge-down will be etched into the minds of many rugby fans.

In the other quarterfinal, the favourites, Ireland, were unceremoniously shown the door, as they fell 28-24 to the mighty New Zealand All Blacks. Ireland had several opportunities to take kickable penalties but opted to chase seven points, ultimately leaving empty-handed. The southern hemisphere celebrated their dominance over the northern hemisphere titan, shocking the rugby world.

Without a doubt, both of these matches were nothing short of exhilarating encounters. History was made when the traditional Haka display by New Zealand was drowned out by the vociferous Irish fans just before kick-off.

It is my firm belief that no stadium in history has ever hosted two superior displays of rugby in a single weekend like we witnessed at the Stade de France during this ongoing World Cup Rugby tournament.

It’s also highly probable that no venue has ever seen two such extraordinary occasions. This was a treat not just for rugby fans, but for the world – rugby at its absolute best!

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