Brendan Venter says that the winner of the semi-final between the Boks and Wales has a better chance of World Cup glory than the winner of the match between England and New Zealand.
The two semi-finals will be contested by the top four ranked teams in the world, with New Zealand and England facing off in the first game in Yokohama on Saturday, followed by the second between South Africa and Wales at the same venue on Sunday.
In his column for Stuff.co.nz, Venter writes that the highly-anticipated first semi-final will take its toll on both England and the All Blacks and whoever wins the match may be fatigued in the final.
‘The first semi-final between New Zealand and England is going to be a humdinger. The teams ranked first and second on the World Rugby rankings were devastating in the way they went about defeating Ireland and Australia respectively.
‘I feel that whoever comes through the Wales-South Africa contest will have an advantage in the final because, like two heavyweight boxers, England and New Zealand will go toe-to-toe for 80-plus minutes and will aim to knock each other out.’
Venter says the winner of whoever comes through as winner between Wales and South Africa will have an advantage in the final.
‘’The final might be a bridge too far and the winner of the first semi-final may well be punch drunk by the time they reach November 2. The winner of South Africa-Wales could actually have a better chance of glory than everyone thinks.
‘The second semi-final between South Africa and Wales will prove a brilliant tactical battle and I can’t see this being more than a five-point game either way. It’s a big week for the Springbok team because Wales will be their first real challenge outside of the first game against the All Blacks.’
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