Watch: Wales to play Portugal for only the second time as they unexpectedly qualify for World Cup
Wales will play Portugal for only the second time after they unexpectedly qualified for the World Cup in France next year.
The Portuguese became the last team to qualify for Group C – and the World Cup as a whole – with the last kick of the match to defeat the USA on aggregate in Dubai.
It’s the first time Portugal have qualified since the last time the World Cup was held in France, in 2007.
It’s a blow for 2031 hosts, the USA, who miss the Rugby World Cup for the first time in its history.
🚨 LE PORTUGAL EST DE RETOUR EN COUPE DU MONDE !
Sur une pénalité cruciale de Samuel Marques, le Portugal arrache le nul 16-16 contre lez USA et disputera leur second Mondial de son histoire, après 2007 !
— Gauthier Baudin (@GauthierBaudin) November 18, 2022
USA, Portugal, Hong Kong and Kenya met in a four-team tournament which concluded today with Portugal taking the win.
The USA, who had competed at eight of the previous nine World Cups, had been the favourites to snag the last qualification place.
“For the rugby community this is amazing, we’ve been missing (from the World Cup) for quite some time and we need a new generation to inspire the kids,” Portugal captain Tomas Appleton said in his post-match interview.
The last time Portugal and Wales met, in Lisbon in 1994, Wales ran out 102-11 winners.
It was Wales’ second biggest-ever win, their largest being a 98 – 0 thrashing of Japan in 2004.
Support our Nation today
For the price of a cup of coffee a month you can help us create an independent, not-for-profit, national news service for the people of Wales, by the people of Wales.