England hit with fine over Haka response

Siya Kolisi

Siya Kolisi

England has been fined and reprimanded for its V-formation response to the All Blacks haka in the lead up to their World Cup semi-final victory.

As New Zealand lined up to begin the haka, England's players opted not to face the challenge shoulder-to-shoulder, as is customary, and instead lined up in an inverted V - with the two prongs arrowing towards their rivals, as if to envelop them.

World Rugby said England had breached tournament rules "relating to cultural challenges, which states that no players from the team receiving the challenge may advance beyond the halfway line".

Its YouTube video of the incident, titled "England's incredible response to intense New Zealand haka", includes a commentator saying "you want box office?"

Buckingham Palace said in a short statement: "The Duke of Sussex, Patron of the Rugby Football Union (RFU), will visit Japan to attend the 2019 Rugby World Cup Final between England and South Africa on Saturday 2nd November".

France were fined £2500 in 2011 when they formed a similar shape and advanced on New Zealand before the World Cup final in Auckland.

"We meant no offence by it, we just wanted to let them know that we were ready for the challenge ahead".

Looking at the New Zealand vs Wales odds, we like Evens for the first scoring play to be an All Blacks try.

He highlighted England's outstanding linespeed in defence, which cuts down on time and space, and deprived the All Blacks any access to their free-flowing, off-loading game.

There's been plenty of derision over the penalty this time for an event which tournament organizers used to promote the contest - a video on the official Twitter feed had 1.2 million views by Wednesday morning.

"We put accountability on ourselves to back it up and I thought we did".

"It's an opportunity for us to go out there and give our best and reflect afterwards", said the former Waikato hooker. We want to make sure we enjoy that and hopefully Alan Phillips books a nice restaurant for us.

"If you can start your season by winning the World Cup, then the possibilities are endless after that". "Personally I don't think it gave them an extra edge but hindsight is a handsome thing isn't it?" We knew it would rile them up, it probably felt like we disrespected them. "You've got it. How about the challenge from England v New Zealand?"

"But I think with this side what was really impressive is that at the final whistle, yes of course they were pleased - there were big smiles, big hugs and everything - but they seemed to be fairly grounded and under control and recognised that it was a semi-final and not a final".

Hansen's assistant Ian Foster remains the most likely coach to take over the All Blacks given their succession system though the manner of the one-sided World Cup semifinal loss to England will have dented that.

"They've already come out and said they're going to fight fire with fire".

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