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Most Underrated Players During The Rugby World Cup 2023

Most Underrated Players in the Rugby World Cup

A stunning edition of the Rugby World Cup drew to a conclusion in France at the start of November, as South Africa successfully defended the top prize they had won in Japan.

It was a sensational period for the sport, which saw some thrilling clashes in the knockout stage. Meanwhile, rugby was able to reach significant audiences worldwide, bringing fresh countries to the forefront regarding the potential future of the game.

There was no shortage of star performers throughout the European tournament, and there will be some excellent players to keep tabs on ahead of the future international matches next year.

But who were some underrated performers at the 2023 Rugby World Cup in France?

Most Underrated Players in the Rugby World Cup

1. Nicolas Martins

It was a historic World Cup campaign for Portugal in France this year, as they defied expectations to land a first-ever win at the tournament. That success came stunningly in their final pool stage match against Fiji, but their performances throughout the tournament were at a high level.

nicolas martins - Most Underrated Players in the Rugby WC

One of their star performers at the tournament this year was Nicolas Martins, who looks set for a bright future in the game. Martins caught the imagination of Portugal, as the 24-year-old scored five points in four matches for the European nation.

Overall, he completed 22 national carries and carried the ball 196 meters. He was also impressive defensively after making 63 tackles to achieve a success rate of 88%. A bright future in the sport looks likely for Martins, and it would be a surprise if he is still playing in the second tier in France for much longer.

2. Jac Morgan

It would be fair to say that Wales would have been slightly disappointed with their performances at the Rugby World Cup in 2023, as they would have expected to reach at least the semi-final stage after coming up against Argentina in the first knockout round.

Jac Morgan - Most Underrated Players in the Rugby WC

However, one player who came out of the tournament with enormous respect in the bank was Jac Morgan. The 23-year-old flanker played four times at the competition in France, scoring an impressive ten points.

Morgan also registered two tries, his only efforts at the World Cup during his career. If you picked him for your fantasy league team, you probably do not regret it. And if you like fantasy rugby, you can check out some fun rugby team names:

The Welshman was a strong carrier of the ball for the Welsh throughout the tournament, as he made 17 carries and traveled 90 meters. He also excelled defensively after making 61 tackles to average a success rate of 81%.

He was often the man to take the game by the scruff of the neck by Wales, and that was evident by the fact that he made just one handling error.

3. Ben Earl

There wasn’t much faith that England could achieve anything at the Rugby World Cup this year, as preparations before the tournament were far from ideal.

Ben Earl - Most Underrated Players in the Rugby WC

However, the nation was within a few minutes of a stunning spot in the World Cup final, leading South Africa until the final stages. Several players over-performed for England throughout the tournament, but one of their star men came in the form of 25-year-old forward Ben Earl.

The star was excellent in seven appearances for the Red Roses at the tournament, scoring an impressive five points. He made three kicks from hand and completed 64 runs.

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Earl made seven clean breaks and could take the pressure off the English defensive line by beating over 20 defenders throughout the tournament. The Englishman was also excellent in defense throughout the tournament, scoring an excellent 80 tackles recording a success rate of 83%.

Earl will again be a key player for England when the Six Nations gets underway in early 2024. However, he suffered an injury recently, which might undermine his chances to be at that tournament.

4. Mark Tele’a

At the start of the Rugby World Cup, New Zealand were overlooked by many as a severe win contender, as they were the fourth choice to win the tournament behind Ireland, France, and South Africa.

Mark Tele’a - Most Underrated Players in the Rugby WC

However, their thrilling quarterfinal success against the Irish showcased that they were still among the dominant teams in the world. However, their bid for World Cup success would eventually come up short in Paris, as they were edged out in a thriller against South Africa.

Regardless, one of their brightest emerging stars to capture the imagination at the tournament this year was Mark Tele’a. The 26-year-old winger played four times at the World Cup, scoring an impressive 15 points from three tries.

He made a stunning 392 meters during his campaign and contributed 25 tackles for the All Blacks.

Tele’a was also one of the star men in the final against the Springboks, as he nearly turned the game on its head almost singlehandedly. Nonetheless, his one-person aim to win the World Cup eventually came short. But he looks set to shape the future of the All Blacks at the tournament.

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Aqeel Ahmad
the authorAqeel Ahmad
Aqeel Ahmad is a passionate sports fan who enjoys reading and writing about the most recent sporting events taking place all around the world.

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