If picked it will be his third start in 11 days after playing during both Ireland’s 27-3 win over Scotland and the shocking 19-12 loss to hosts Japan on Saturday.
However, despite Ireland having a cluster of games so close together Stander is determined to play and do a job for the team if called upon.
“Yes definitely, it’s the excitement of the World Cup. This is what you want to do when you’re growing up, thinking about being part of a World Cup. So yes, recovery-wise we’re being looked after really well, we’ve got training on Tuesday, so we’ve got to make sure the body’s ready. So if I’m selected I’m good to go again,” he said.
Should Stander start it is unlikely that he will be joined in the back-row by Peter O’Mahony and Josh van der Flier for a third successive game as it is expected that head coach Joe Schmidt will rotate his squad for the must-win fixture.
With that in mind it would appear likely that Rhys Ruddock and Jordi Murphy will be either side of Stander. Murphy, is set to link up with the squad after No 8 Jack Conan was ruled out of the remainder of the tournament with a broken foot, but Stander is excited to have the Ulster star join them in Japan.
“Jordi always fits right in, we’re looking forward to getting him back in. He’s going to bring good balance a lot of energy to the back-row, with his ball-carrying. So we’re looking forward to having him in there,” he added.
Ireland’s game against the Russians has now become a vital fixture for the men in green following Saturday’s loss as they look to qualify for the quarter-finals. However, despite being a massive shock, Stander has admitted that the loss is close but not bottom of his career lows.
“It’s up there, I’d say it’s close to the bottom. My red card’s probably always going to be at the bottom,” he finished.
Going into the campaign it was believed that Ireland would be in pole position to finish on top of Pool A but Saturday’s defeat has dealt them a major blow, meaning they must now try and not only win but pick up bonus-points in their final two fixtures and even that may not be enough.
Stander and co will need to improve massively if they are to achieve their goal, but what is certain is that the squad are still positive, Stander has proved that, now they just need to produce positive performances on the pitch to get their World Cup back on track and keep the dream of holding the Webb Ellis Cup alive.
Ireland Climb in Latest World Rankings
Ireland have had the biggest boost in the latest World Rugby Rankings ahead of the 2023 Rugby World Cup draw later this year
The boys in green have taken over the No 4 spot in the rankings following their 24-14 win over Wales in the Six Nations over the weekend, with their opponents dropping down to fifth.
It is a major boost for the Irish and gives them something to hold on to heading into the rest of this year’s fixtures as they are now currently in the top seeds ahead of the draw for the pool stages of France 2023.
World Rugby announced recently that they will hold the draw later this year meaning that teams will have less time to climb the rankings than last time around when they had 18 months between the previous World Cup and the draw for the next one.
A total of twelve teams will head into the draw as seeds in three brackets with the top four in the rankings being first seeds, meaning as of now Wales would be second seeds along with France, Australia and Japan.
Elsewhere in the rankings Georgia have moved up ahead of Italy, following the former’s latest two defeats in the Six Nations, while the biggest risers have been Portugal, who have moved from 22nd to 20th, but Russia have dived from 20th to 25th.
Ireland will be hoping to continue their perfect start to the Six Nations campaign when they take on the third-ranked team England away from home, whom they may look to overtake in the rankings before the draw.
World Rugby Confirm Timing of 2023 RWC Draw
World Rugby have confirmed when they will be hosting the 2023 Rugby World Cup draw and it has put pressure on teams to get positive results this year
World Rugby has announced that it will host the 2023 Rugby World Cup draw in November of this year.
The tournament will take place in France with the draw being held in Paris following the November internationals.
That means that teams only have between now and then to better their current rankings and move into a different drawing band, whereas for the previous draw they had 18 months to improve.
Speaking on the announcement World Rugby chief Bill Beaumont is excited to discover the fate of the teams and has put the pressure on teams to do well this year.
“The pool draw is an important milestone on the road to Rugby World Cup 2023 in France as it really drives excitement and momentum both in the host nation and throughout the global rugby family – it is the moment teams and fans can start to plan. With the World Rugby rankings determining the bands for the RWC 2023 pool draw, it promises to be a fascinating year of men’s international rugby with every match counting towards seeding at the end of the November Test series,” he said.
Twelve of the 20 participating teams from last year’s World Cup in Japan have automatically qualified, with the other eight to be decided in the qualifiers that will begin later this year.
However, the twelve teams that are already involved will have to be at their best to move up a band in the current rankings or fear dropping down in which case they could get a harder draw.
As of this moment the first band contains the World Cup semi-finalists from last year in South Africa, England, New Zealand and Wales, with the remaining quarter-finalists making up band two in Ireland, Australia, Japan and France.
It will be a tough task for teams to improve their current standings with the Six Nations teams only having one edition of the tournament to improve compared to the two editions they had last time around, but it does add some extra competition to this year’s fixtures.
Fans Player of the Decade Confirmed
World Rugby have announced the winner of their Fans Player of the Decade vote and there’s no surprise who’s won
Former All Blacks fly-half Dan Carter has been named World Rugby’s Fans Player of the Decade following their polls over the past couple of weeks.
The organisation narrowed the competition down to 16 players, as they split them into a last-16 style format, with backs on one side and forwards on the other. With two players going head-to-head in the polls to make it through to each respective round.
Last week it was brought down to the final four, with all of them being New Zealand internationals as Carter was pitted up against Beauden Barrett, with Richie McCaw facing Kieran Read.
McCaw and Carter were victorious and now Carter has come out as the overall winner as the best player over the past 10-years.
It is not hard to see why fans have gone for the 112-cap All Black, who finished up his international career in 2015, having guided his country to historic back-to-back Rugby World Cup crowns.
As well as that he holds the title for the most points scored at test-level rugby with an incredible 1598 to his name.
On the international stage he was impressive, but he has been equally so at club-level, winning domestic crowns in both France with Racing 92 and in Japan with the Kobelco Steelers.
The 37-year-old is still under contract with the Japanese outfit, but has been unable to play for them for the majority of the year, having suffered a major injury, which also prevented him from a brief return to Racing 92 for the latter-half of last season.
However, he is poised to return to the playing field shortly and will be hoping to guide his team to further success and will have the aid of another All Black great joining him in the form of Brodie Retallick, who is linking up with the side for the season during his year sabbatical.
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