Saturday, November 14, 2009

World Cup Rugby: Will it be Tunisia or Namibia?

Namibia v Tunisia in Tunis (WCQ Africa & Africa Cup; Final, 1st leg)

Venue: Stade National de rugby d’El Menzah


The winner of this series (game 2 in Windhoek, November 28) will qualify directly into the Rugby World Cup finals. The loser still gets another chance. They will play the winner of Europe R6 for a final World Cup finals place.

Namibia warmed up for this crucial game with a 12-9 win over Portugal in Lisbon. Traditionally they have not performed well against the Tunisians but have won all their home fixtures. Namibia will want to win here in Tunis but they will at least push the Tunisians as close as they can, knowing they have the home advantage for the second leg.

2009.11.00 Namibian Team
The Namibian team prior to leaving for Portugal and Tunisia. Image thanks to

Tunisia has the uphill battle. They must win, and win well, for their home fixture knowing they have never won away in Windhoek before. This game shapes up to be a cracker. I would love to be in Tunis Saturday.

Last Five Encounters
07.10.2006 Namibia 23-15 in Windhoek (WCQ Africa R2, Grp B; Africa Cup, Grp B)
01.07.2006 Tunisia 24-7 in Tunis (WCQ Africa R2, Group B; Africa Cup Group B)
12.10.2002 Tunisia 24-17 in Tunis (WCQ Africa R4)
28.09.2002 Namibia 26-19 in Windhoek (WCQ Africa R4)
18.04.1998 Namibia 20-17 in Tunis (WCQ Africa Rnd C)

Traditionally both these teams has found it difficult to win in each other's patch.

Because it's been a while since these two teams faced each other lets look at recent performances

Namibia's Last Five Tests
27.06.2009 Won 54-14 v Ivory Coast in Windhoek (WCQ Africa R2 & Africa Cup Semi Final)
14.06.2009 Drew with Ivory Coast 13-13 in Abidjan (WCQ Africa R2 & Africa Cup Semi Final)
15.05.2009 Lost 7-19 v Argentina XV in Buenos Aires
08.05.2009 Lost 8-67 v Argentina XV in Buenos Aires
02.08.2008 Won 35-21 v Zimbabwe in Windhoek (WCQ Africa R1, Pool A)

Tunisia's Last Five Tests
27.06.2009 Won 38-13 v Uganda in Tunis (WCQ Africa R2 & Africa Cup Semi-Final)
13.06.2009 Won 41-17 v Uganda in Kampala (WCQ Africa R2 & Africa Cup Semi Final)
30.05. 2009 Won 15-7 v Romanian XV in Tunis
02.08.2008 Won 44-15 v Kenya in Tunis (WCQ Africa R1, Pool C)
14.06.2008 Won 16-12 v Cameroun in Yaounde (WCQ Africa R1, Pool C)

Tunisia has the better win/loss record but against weaker teams.

GWC Rugby Rankings: World Table-Namibia 18th, Tunisia 27th
Africa Table-Namibia 2nd, Tunisia 3rd

Prediction: .It will be tough. It will be close. Tunisia by 3 points



15. Chrysander Botha (Kudus RFC)
14. Bradley Langenhoven
13. Piet van Zyl (French Club)
12. Tinus Venter
11. Heini Bock
10. Emile Wessels
9. Jurie van Tonder
8. Tinus du Plessis (Rotherham Titans RFC, England)
7. Jacques Nieuwenhuis (English club)
6. Jacques Burger (Northern Transvaal Bulls, SA)
5. Nico Esterhuyse (Boland Cavaliers, SA)
4. Wacca Kazombiaze (Birmingham & Solihull RFC, England)
3. Jane du Toit
2. Hugo Horn (Rotherham Titans RFC, England)
1. Kees Lensing (Castres, France)
16. Shaun Esterhuizen (Stellenbosch University, SA)
17. Marius Visser
18. Heinz Koll (Wanderers RFC) *
19. PJ van Lill
20. Eugene Jantjies (Farul Constanta, Romania)
21. Robert Herridge (United Rugby Club)*
22. David Philander
Head Coach: John Williams

* New caps, and thanks to ‘Quentin’ at


15. Sabeur Charrada
14. Haithem Cheili
13. Amor Hamdi
12. Amor Mezgar
11. Abbes Kherfani
10. Lofti Bensellem
9. Sabri Gmir
8. Moured Souid
7. Mohamed Ben Hmida
6. Kaled Zegden
5. Abdelmajid Zemzem
4. Amara Dridi
3. Akram Aouamri
2. Aziz Kassar
1. Hedi Souid (captain)
16. Noktar Guetari
17. Sari Limevi
18. Chahir Aouadi
19. Amine Gharsallah
20. Mohamed Ali Kochlef
21. Aimen Gloulou
22. Mohamed Garali.
Head Coach: Danie de Villiers, and thanks to ‘Quentin’ at

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