The final 33-man squad selected by Eugen Apjok

Head coach Eugen Apjok has chosen the 33 players for the Romania Rugby World Cup squad, with some big omissions and surprises popping up in the announcement.

No 8 Christian-Marian Chirica is taking on the captaincy. Mihai Macovei, who had previously been skipper and was named as vice-captain, has had to withdraw through injury.

The biggest surprise inclusion in the squad comes in the shape of Tudor Boldor, who after not featuring in the first two Summer squads, was drafted back in last week, playing against Georgia, and has now been rewarded with a World Cup call-up.

Trailblazers Taylor Gontineac, Ovidiu Cojocaru, Hinckley Vaovasa, and Alexandru Savin are all in the squad. 

As for the omissions, Toulon’s Atila Septar has been left out, along with utility back Vladut Popa, and lock Andrei Mahu. Marius Antonescu and Ionel Melinte also miss out due to injuries, as they won’t recover in time. 

Romania will play in their ninth Rugby World Cup, and 2023 marks their return to the tournament after missing 2019 due to breaking eligibility rules. To see all of Romania’s matches, have a read of our Rugby World Cup fixtures here.

Romania Rugby World Cup squad 2023


Alexandru Savin (CSA Steaua)
Gheorghe Gajion (Stade Montois)
Thomas Crețu (Stade Français)
Alexandru Gordaș (CS Dinamo)
Costel Burțilă (RC Hyères Carqueiranne La Crau)
Iulian Harțig (RC Bassin d’Arcachon)


Ovidiu Cojocaru (CS Dinamo)
Robert Irimescu (CSM Știința Baia Mare)
Florin Bărdașu (CSA Steaua)


Adrian Motoc (Biarritz Olympique)
Marius Iftimiciuc (US Carcassonne)
Ștefan Iancu (CSM Știința Baia Mare)


Cristi Chirica (captain – CS Dinamo)
Vlad Neculau (SCM USV Timișoara)
Dragoș Ser (CSA Steaua)
Cristi Boboc (CSA Steaua)
Florian Roșu (CSM Știința Baia Mare)
Damian Strătilă (CSA Steaua)
Andre Gorin (Bayonne)


Gabriel Rupanu (SCM USV Timișoara)
Florin Surugiu (CSA Steaua)
Alin Conache (SCM USV Timișoara)


Gabriel Pop (CS Dinamo)
Tudor Boldor (CS Dinamo)


Taylor Gontineac (Rouen Normandie)
Jason Tomane (CSM Știința Baia Mare)
Tevita Manumua (SCM USV Timișoara)


Nicolas Onuțu (CS Vienne)
Marius Simionescu (SCM USV Timișoara)
Tangimana Fonovai (CSA Steaua)
Taliauli Sikuea


Hinckley Vaovasa (CSA Steaua)
Sioeli Lama (CSM București)

Romania Rugby World Cup Pool

Romania have been drawn in Rugby World Cup Pool B alongside South Africa, Ireland, Scotland and Tonga.

The knockout stages will follow the same format as previous years, with teams from Pools A and B then Pools C and D meeting in the quarter-finals. So Romania and France 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.

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