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Rugby World Cup 2023: Round 1 Predictions

It has been a busy week here are Superbru HQ and we’re set to host the biggest-ever Superbru tournament when the World Cup kicks off on Friday. New players are arriving all the time, but it’s also great to see plenty of people reactivating their accounts, having not played since before the pandemic. Welcome and welcome back.

We hope you like the various new features and design, and that you’ll (re)discover the love for Superbru and come and join us for the various annual tournaments like the URC, Premiership Rugby, Super Rugby etc. etc.

Check out our new Superbru Rugby app if you haven’t already - it will be a great companion throughout the World Cup, and it’s rising quickly up the app store charts - please do us a favour by installing it and perhaps even giving it a 5-star rating.

Can you tell that I’m stalling a little before committing to my Superbru picks? There are several tough ones to contend with, but without further ado, here are my Rugby World Cup predictions for Round 1.

France v New Zealand

Hats off to the tournament organisers who have made this the opening fixture, and what a way to kick things off. It will divide the Superbru community in terms of picks, and there will be bragging rights on the line from day 1. I’d love to see France win their own tournament, but I actually think they might get stage fright in this first game, as they adjust to playing without key man Romain Ntamack, and adjust to being favourites in a fixture against the All Blacks. The visitors will relish underdog status, and the opportunity to crash the French party and lay down a marker to everyone else. New Zealand by 2

Italy v Namibia

There should only be one winner here, and the more I have seen of Italy in the last year or so, the more unfortunate it seems that they share a pool with the All Blacks and France. A winning start here, potentially taking their foot off the gas in the heat. Italy by 23

Ireland v Romania

This is due to be played in 35 degree heat in the South of France, and whilst there’s no chance of an upset, it seems unlikely that it will be a high-octane try-fest. A professional get-the-job-done bonus point win for the World Number 1 team. Ireland by 43

Australia v Georgia

Some people seem to be expecting a comfortable Wallaby win here, but I think Georgia could make life difficult for them. They beat Wales last November, and will be targeting another upset here against this underperforming Aussie side. I’m not brave enough to pick it, but I’m expecting it to be closer than some. Australia by 9

England v Argentina

This is a head over heart pick, but I’ve seen absolutely nothing to suggest that England can put together a coherent attacking game, nor keep their defence tight enough to squeeze out an ugly win. An ugly defeat looks most likely, although I’ll live in hope that this World Cup is not a total disaster for England given their favourable draw. Argentina by 4

Japan v Chile

I’m looking forward to Chile’s Rugby World Cup debut on Sunday, and although expectations are generally quite low, hopefully they’ll play some entertaining rugby. Japan should win, but the newcomers have made it clear that they aren’t just in France to take photos and they should give a reasonable account of themselves. Japan by 18

South Africa v Scotland

The Springboks are looking like serious contenders for this World Cup, and for all the talk of knowing what to expect from them, it doesn’t mean anyone can do anything about it. Scotland look a little underpowered by comparison, and I suspect this will end up being relatively comfortable for the Springboks. South Africa by 11

Wales v Fiji

I am extremely tempted to pick Fiji here, but their win over England will make everyone take them seriously, and with their fly-half ruled out of the tournament, the Fijians may have peaked too early. I think we’re more likely to see Wales take control of the game and refuse to let it get loose. Wales by 9

How do your predictions compare? Let us know in the comments!

13,860 caps
I think that the occasion will carry France to a 6 point win over NZ and that Fiji will overpower a weak Wales. All else, I concur.
7 Sep 09:13
16,228 caps
100% on both counts
7 Sep 10:16
13,569 caps
Agree on France ,Wales we will see ..... 8 Sep 11:55
44 caps
I think Wales will find a way in the end. I also think it would be a much easier game for Fiji if it was later in the group stage, due to depth issues, but Wales having all that time to plan for this game? I think they’ll have the experience
to pip Fiji somewhere 8 Sep 16:01
91,847 caps
Both teams,NZ and France, know that they will both progress to the quarters and won't go all out in the opener.
7 Sep 10:07
5,711 caps
It's going to be a tough game. Margin will be much closer. SA to edge it be less than 5 or lose by 10 or more of the kicking isn't up to scratch
7 Sep 11:07
4,776 caps
Mostly agree, I dont foresee any real upset. Apart from France vs. NZ, Im struggling to pick between England and Arg.. England has been very weak but Arg also has been slightly hot and cold this year
7 Sep 11:16
63 caps
Will someone please tell me if you can make transfers inbetween rounds with players not in your original squad. This would affect my picks for the fantasy team. Any help appreciated!
7 Sep 13:10
90,147 caps
Yes, you get 6 free transfers to optimise your squad between each round.

Check the news article about the fantasy game for more useful tips: https://www.superbru.com/herald/world-cup-fantasy-tips-and-tricks 7 Sep 13:40
608 caps
I've gone more optimistic with France and predicted an 11 point win for them, due to NZ not having a great warm-up to the World Cup.
7 Sep 14:49
124 caps
Almost exact same picks and margins
7 Sep 19:29
1,730 cap
not always a good thing... 8 Sep 12:57
2,872 caps
All Blacks 13+ and meet France again in the final
7 Sep 21:20
70,344 caps
Ireland to score at least 60 Vs minnows
7 Sep 21:59
1,730 cap
doubt it in 35 degrees
8 Sep 12:57
379 caps
Shorty yes like it.
8 Sep 00:34
65 caps
France will win with 7 points over the All Blacks
8 Sep 03:13
400 caps
8 Sep 03:24
47 caps
NZ gonna win over France. The game against the springboks woke them wide awake.
8 Sep 05:03
5,173 caps
Feel the same...the haka,deep pride and pure class will see them through....losing to the bokkie(an l am a bokkie fan)was jus what they needed-made them humble an dangerous-l c them going all the way to the final...! 8 Sep 18:53
1,551 cap
French by 9 points
8 Sep 07:28
24 caps
New Zealand will take this one by 5points. They are still licking their wounds from the Springboks hiding. They will come back more dangerous...
8 Sep 07:43
26 caps
8 New Zeeland up
8 Sep 07:47
23,156 caps
France and Scotland by 2
8 Sep 09:15
1,730 cap
scots to win? nah. 8 Sep 12:58
13,165 caps
Hi there !! Can someone tell me how to exit a pool on my android mobile phone?
8 Sep 11:23
3,492 caps
Unfortunately you can only resign from a pool via the web interface. You can also access that on your phone by googling superbru and login with your credentials. 9 Sep 08:03
12,291 caps
Robpat click on the left top corner then the options.
8 Sep 11:57
1,730 cap
Aussies will win by more than 9 lol..even with how bad they are under Jones
8 Sep 12:59
38,338 caps
BB what a shocker!!!. Can't believe that he played 80 minutes. Made it easier for France.
8 Sep 21:51
5,711 caps
@Robpat, at the top left, click the button on the left if the Word 'Superbru' that will bring click on leave a pooldown a drop menu. Then select the pool that you want to resign from.
10 Sep 01:13