Posted by: Gerry | October 14, 2007

France – The Real RWC Chokers

Much has been spoken and written about New Zealand being the champion chokers of the World Cup, but after last night that title should really go to France. In all six world cups so far, France have been there or thereabouts, but have never won the title. Their record is as follows:

1987 Lost to New Zealand 29-9 in the final
1991 Lost to England 19-10 in the quarter final
1995 Lost to South Africa 19-15 in the semi final
1999 Lost to Australia 35-12 in the final
2003 Lost to England 24-7 in the semi final
2007 Lost to England 14-9 in the semi final

Now if that doesn’t make them world choking champions, then I don’t know what does. At least New Zealand have won it once.

Another interesting observationette from the above record – in four of the five previous world cups, France were knocked out by the eventual winners. I wonder have Brian Ashton and his squad copped that…



  1. Is “choking” the same as loosing? You could do the same with Ireland, Scotland, etc. and all WC non-winning nations… truth is in all the matches you’re enumerating, France was always second best… with the exception of 95 when SA won courtesy of the ref… none of these defeat was particularly shocking… about last saturday, their tanks simply dried out in front of England’s 10 men rugby…

  2. Choking could be defined as being unable to close the thing out when it is well within your capability. France’s world cup ambitions invariably come asunder just when the finishing line is in sight. They are indisputably one of the great powers of world rugby and by all accounts should have won at least one world title by now. Having beaten the All Blacks, this time around should have been their best shot at it, but they blew it.

    As for us, well, we have never come within shouting distance of winning the world cup. We have never gotten beyond the quarter finals. We are however, the champion chokers of the Six Nations, with five second place finishes and three third places since 2000. 🙂

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