Here is how the World Cup in France will be structured

If you’re wondering ‘How is Rugby World Cup structured?’ as we head into France 2023, here is a quick breakdown of how things are set to work.

Firstly, there are 20 teams competing, in four pools of five.

How do the pools work at Rugby World Cup?

The teams in each pool will face each other once, in a round robin format.

Related: Is there extra time at Rugby World Cup?

It was also announced in 2021 that the 2023 Rugby World Cup in France would be extended by one week to allow all teams at least five days preparation before their next pool match.

Player squad sizes will also increase from 31 to 33, with the decisions designed to improve player-welfare standards.

How many teams go through in the Rugby World Cup?

Two teams from each pool go through to the quarter-finals. And this is how we’ll see the Rugby World Cup structured from then on.

The knockout stages will follow the same format as previous years, with teams from Pools A and then B then Pools C and D meeting in each of the quarter-finals. So Wales and England could meet in the last eight, for example.

QF1 – Winner Pool C v Runner-up Pool D
QF2 – Winner Pool B v Runner-up Pool A
QF3 – Winner Pool D v Runner-up Pool C
QF4 – Winner Pool A v Runner-up Pool B

Then the semi-finals will be the Winner of QF1 v Winner QF2 and the Winner QF3 v Winner QF4.

The winners of those two matches will compete in the final on Sat 28 October – the losers of those two semi-finals face each other the day before in the third-place play-off.

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