Irish joker Tommy Bowe

“If we do not get the result we want, it will be kind of tough around here.”

All Blacks hooker Andrew Hore contemplates the unthinkable for New Zealanders at RWC 2011.

“I might just sit in my room and watch movies to get away from everything.”

Back row Victor Vito (NZL) would rather contemplate nothing as the pressure mounts.

“If we lose the ball against them, it is likely to be a try as there is no other team who can use so little possession to such great effect.”

Italy forwards coach Carlo Orlandi sums up the threat posed by Australia in their opening pool match.

“I think Gethin… what’s his name again? Gethin… his absence doesn’t really make a difference because his replacement is just as good.”

Springbok Tendai Mtawarira suggests he has given little thought to opposing prop Gethin Jenkins’ unavailability through injury for South Africa’s match with Wales.

“At least I’m not the oldest.”

– Namibia prop Jané Du Toit, at 35 the fifth-oldest player at RWC 2011, decides he’s happy not to have the overall record.

“I think we’ll have to get a weigh-in there.”

South Africa’s Gio Aplon (1.75m and 78kg, as listed in the team media guide) is not ready to brag about his physical superiority over Welsh wing Shane Williams (1.71m and 77kg).

“It has gone pretty well so far. I joined the national team for the first time during the Six Nations and played a lot with Treviso in the Celtic League. Now I’m at the World Cup and I would never have believed that would have happened.”

Italy scrum-half Fabio Semenzato ponders his meteoric progress from international debut to the World Cup in the space of just seven months.

“I like drinking wine, so I thought I’d do a course in it.”

– England prop, professional musician and near-elite class powerlifter Andrew Sheridan reveals the thirst for excellence that has led him to study by correspondence through the Wine and Spirit Education Trust in the UK.

“There was almost a few broken bones and a few bodies knocked out of the World Cup. I wasn’t great to be honest, I was just trying to knock people off the road. The more people I could injure or knock off the road, that was success for me.”

Ireland wing Tommy Bowe was keen to make his mark when he and his teammates tackled the Skyline Luge, an 800m gravity ride through the trees in Queenstown.

“We heard you were concerned about security issues, but let me reassure you that half of New Zealand doesn’t know where Whanganui is, so you’re safe from a terrorist attack.”

Piri Cribb (NZL), master of ceremonies, puts American minds to rest at the USA team’s welcome ceremony in Whanganui.