Rugby World Cup 2011: News round-up

2011 RUGBY WORLD CUP IN NEW ZEALAND

Venues:
11 (nine in North Island, two in South)
Dates:
Fri 9 Sept - Sun 23 Oct
Kick-offs:
From 0100 BST - 0930 BST
Coverage:
Scores & reports on BBC Sport website plus live text commentaries on home nations and other major games; updates on BBC Radio 5 live; watch on ITV; commentary on TalkSport
Jeremy Guscott's Rugby World Cup Ones to Watch

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Scotland have made 11 changes for Wednesday's Pool B clash against Georgia with Rory Lawson named skipper. Only wings Max Evans and Sean Lamont, prop Allan Jacobsen and flanker Kelly Brown are retained from the opening game against Romania. Georgia have named Mamuka Gorgodze at flanker.

Wales are hopeful that Stephen Jones and Gethin Jenkins, who both missed the 17-16 defeat against South Africa, will be fit to play against Samoa on Sunday. Ryan Jones is the only player from the 30-man squad unavailable, as he has aggravated a calf injury.

Australia winger Digby Ioane is expected to play again at the World Cup but will miss Saturday's match against Ireland after breaking his thumb in the team's opening victory against Italy.

New Zealand number eight Kieran Read says he is on target for the team's final World Cup pool match with Canada on 2 October, having been sidelined with ankle trouble since the 25-20 defeat against Australia in the deciding Tri-Nations match on 27 August.

Ireland prop Tony Buckley will have a scan on the shoulder injury he sustained in the 22-10 win against USA.

Scotland coach Andy Robinson says his team will learn from their edgy 34-24 win against Romania on Saturday. "There's no doubt the other teams in this pool will look at what Romania did and target our scrum and the pick-and-go area. Georgia will put us under pressure up front but it's up to us, as a pack, to respond to that," he said.

South Africa coach Peter de Villiers reiterated the importance of maintaining a watertight defence after his team's 17-16 victory over Wales in their opening Pool D match on Sunday. "Defence has become an art at this tournament," he said. "The longer this tournament progresses, the more people are going to struggle to cross the gain line."

Samoa have selected the same starting XV that beat Australia 32-23 in Sydney in July for their opening World Cup match against Namibia on Wednesday.

The Namibians have made three changes following their 49-25 loss to Fiji on Saturday in Rotorua. Henk Franken, the last of their three uncapped players to get a start, will feature at lock, Jacques Nieuwenhuis moves from number eight to blindside flanker to make way for PJ Van Lill, and Llewellyn Winkler will start on the left wing in the only back-line change.

Australia prop James Slipper is happy with his fitness after a late appearance as replacement in the 32-6 win over Italy, his first match for the Wallabies since November 2010 following ankle surgery. "I played 10 minutes and I feel like I've played 80. It's been 12 weeks since I had the operation and I played against Canada for the Barbarians three weeks ago. I'm just getting back into it, the ankle feels pretty good and I'm keeping my head above ground at the moment," he said.

Canada have made two changes from the team that beat USA 27-7 last month for their opening pool match against Tonga on Wednesday.

The Tongans made 11 changes to the team that began the the 41-10 defeat against New Zealand, seven to its forward pack and four among its backline. It is the largest number of changes between matches in their World Cup history.

Ahead of their match against South Africa on Thursday the Fiji team have checked into a Wellington hotel currently housing the South African embassy.

Argentina have called up wing Lucas Borges as a replacement for centre Gonzalo Tiesi, who was ruled out of the remainder of the tournament after damaging knee ligaments in a clash with England's Courtney Lawes in the 13-9 defeat suffered by the Pumas on Saturday. However, captain Felipe Contepomi could recover from the rib injury that forced him from the field in that match and could play against Romania in Invercargill on Saturday.

A parade of topless, motorcycle-riding strippers entitled "Boobs on Bikes" scheduled to take place in Auckland this month has been cancelled to preserve the Rugby World Cup's family atmosphere, organisers have said.

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