New Zealand’s fullback Ben Smith  passes to his captain Richie McCaw during World Cup final against Australia at Twickenham. Photograph: Franck Fife/AFP/Getty Images

Did you spot all those tricolours in Twickenham? The ultimate triumph of hope over Argentina. In the end our people had to make do with being neutral (...)

David Campese breaks for Australia during the 1991 Rugby World Cup semi-final. Australia beat New Zealand 16-6. Photograph: Getty

Next Saturday’s Rugby World Cup final between Australia and New Zealand should prove a fitting climax for what has been - bar home nation disappointme(...)

Rugby’s uncanny knack to organise a singalong brought a boozy, knees up atmosphere to Twickenham. With 82,000 fans breaking into ‘Sweet Caroline’ and (...)

David Campese inspired Australia to victory over the All Blacks in the 1991 World Cup semi-final at Lansdowne Road. Photograph: Getty

Australia and New Zealand played each other for the first time in 1903 but it wasn’t until 1991 theymet on neutral soil. The venue, Lansdowne Road. Th(...)

Philip Matthews can’t stop  Michael Lynagh scoring the winning try in the 1991 World Cup semi-final at Lansdowne Road. Photograph: Inpho

The best teams in any sport are the ones who never know when they are beaten. For them, the clock seems to tick on that little bit longer and f(...)

Gordon Hamilton’s try put Ireland on the brink of a famous win over Australia and the 1991 Rugby World Cup semi-finals. Photograph: Inpho

Ahead of the 1991 World Cup quarter-final between Ireland and Australia, not many people were giving Ciaran Fitzgerald’s side a prayer. Indeed,(...)

Cian Healy, Paul O’Connell and Ronan O’Gara during Ireland’s 15-6 win over Australia at the 2011 Rugby World Cup. Photograph: Getty

With rugby’s senior nations forming a relatively small pool of just eight sides, it figures that certain teams tend to meet each other regularly at th(...)

Conor Murray is confident going into his second World Cup. “We are in a very good place and I don’t think we should be shying away from that,” he says. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

This time four years ago it’s still remarkable to think that Conor Murray went into Ireland’s World Cup preparatory programme as fifth choice scrumhal(...)

Rob Andrew’s drop goal gave England victory over Australia with the last kick of the 1995 Rugby World Cup quarter-final. Photograph: Getty

Australia against England is one of sport’s finest and most intriguing rivalries, whether the two nations are competing for a 15cm-tall urn or on a ru(...)

Serge Blanco dives to score a magical try and give France a 30-24 win over Australia in the 1987 Rugby World Cup semi-final. Photograph: Getty

With Australia and New Zealand through to the semi-finals of the inaugural World Cup, where they would play France and Wales respectively, it seeme(...)