No shortage of courage but Georgia need to develop threats

No shortage of courage but Georgia need to develop threats
By Reuters

12/10/2019 at 05:56Updated 12/10/2019 at 05:58

By Nick Mulvenney FUKUROI CITY, Japan, Oct 12 (Reuters) - Georgia arrived at their fifth Rugby World Cup with a reputation as a physical side that revels in the tight stuff but does not have enough of a threat in attack to topple the top nations.

By Nick Mulvenney
FUKUROI CITY, Japan, Oct 12 (Reuters) - Georgia arrived at
their fifth Rugby World Cup with a reputation as a physical side
that revels in the tight stuff but does not have enough of a
threat in attack to topple the top nations.
To their disappointment, they will depart Japan with that
reputation little changed after a sole win over Uruguay and
losses to Wales, Fiji and Australia.
Of the courage of the team there can be no doubt and the
Lelos tackled themselves into the ground against the Wallabies
on a wet night in Shizuoka on Friday.
Despite conceding 80 percent possession, they were only 17-8
down inside the last 10 minutes before conceding two late tries
to round out their tournament 27-8 losers.
"It's very unfortunate that we conceded two quick tries at
the end. That has been the difference between very good teams
and not so good teams," captain Merab Sharikadze said.
"It was the difference between Australia and us because they
play stronger teams all the time, and they executed what they
wanted.
"But I'm still proud of what we've done and I hope we'll do
better in the future and have a more successful World Cup in
France."
With fourth place now their best possible finish in Pool D,
the Georgians will have to qualify for the 2023 tournament in
France.
The departure of New Zealander Milton Haig after eight years
in charge also means that qualification will be the
responsibility of another coach.
Mamuka "Gorgodzilla" Gorgodze, the flanker whose aggressive
running and tackling epitomised the Georgian style, will also be
gone after confirming his retirement from the international game
at the age of 35.
Centre Sharikadze, 26, is no shirker in the tackling stakes
himself but clearly believes Georgia must be more creative if
they are to make the progress they want to.
"Hopefully in the future we can be more productive in attack
as well," he added.
"You can't win the game unless you score more points. Yeah
we had really good defence and I am proud of my team but we need
to improve a lot.
"We have a young squad and hopefully for the next World Cup
we will show a better performance."
Haig suggested that even when teams like Georgia did produce
great fighting performances at the World Cup, it was often put
down to an off day for the top teams, like Australia.
"If (Australia) are going to take a slating from their media
I think that's definitely disrespectful to us," Haig said.
"They are a very good side, they've got good set-piece now,
their lineouts are very good, even their maul now they've
developed that, and they've got a very good scrum.
"If you look at those components and their quality players
and then you measure tier one against tier two, we played pretty
well tonight."

(Editing by Amlan Chakraborty)

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