Snubbed Rugby World Cup XV

Snubbed Rugby World Cup XV

The Rugby World Cup is just days away and every team has named their 31-man squad for the showpiece event in Japan.

The best rugby players in the game will arrive in Japan, however, there are a number of players who have missed the final cut and missed out on a place on the plane.

We have selected a team of the players who won't feature at the World Cup having missed out on selection. Only players who are eligible and have been overlooked are eligible in the side. Players who miss out due to eligibility rules or injury do not feature.

15. Alex Goode - England

Goode hardly got a look into Eddie Jones' squad despite having one of his best seasons where he won the Premiership-Champions Cup double.

He was superb for Saracens and joins the likes of Damian Willemse, Mike Brown and Tom Banks who were unlucky not to make the 31-man cut.

14. Teddy Thomas - France

Thomas was one of France's key men over the past few seasons but did not even get a look into the training squad for the World Cup.

The likes of Juan Imhoff, Waisake Naholo and Steff Evans are all in a similar position to Thomas.

13. Huw Jones - Scotland

Huw Jones exploded onto the test scene in 2016 and looked like a long term option for Scotland at outside centre but fast forward to 2019 and a dip in form paired with a few struggles with injury has seen Jones miss out on a place in the Scotland Rugby World Cup squad.

Mathieu Bastareaud, Ma'a Nonu and Scott Williams are the other unlucky midfielders who have missed out.

12. Ngani Laumape - New Zealand

After a stellar two seasons in Super Rugby and never really disappointing for the All Blacks, Ngani Laumape edges Ben Te'o in our snubbed XV.

Both players were regular squad members for their test sides and were both unlucky to miss out on a place at the World Cup.

11. Santiago Cordero - Argentina

Argentina's relaxed eligibility rules saw Cordero return to test rugby and the pocket rocket winger was in fine form for Exeter Chiefs and was equally as effective for Los Pumas in the Rugby Championship.

However, Cordero missed out in a very competitive back three. His fellow countryman Juan Imhoff is also unlucky to miss out.

10. Danny Cipriani - England

After returning to test rugby in 2018 and enjoying a stellar season with Gloucester, Danny Cipriani looked as if had timed his run perfectly to make the England Rugby World Cup squad.

However, it wasn't meant to be for the playmaker as he was dropped during one of England's World Cup camps.

Joaquin Diaz Bonilla was unfortunate not to make the Pumas squad after helping the Jaguares to the Super Rugby Final.

9. Kieran Marmion - Ireland

A number of quality scrumhalves won't feature for their nation in Japan. Rhys Webb (through eligibility), Nick Phipps and Martin Landajo to name just three but Marmion is particularly unlucky after backing up Conor Murray for most of this World Cup cycle and played a vital role in Ireland's win over New Zealand.

1. Rob Evans - Wales

Evans was a shock omission in Warren Gatland's squad with the Wales boss preferring young Rhys Carre over Evans despite the Rob starting four of Wales' five tests in the recent Grand Slam. 

Evans got the nod at loosehead in our team but Ben Moon (England), Tom Robertson (Australia) and Lizo Gqoboka (South Africa) were three other unlucky looseheads.

2. Tatafu Polota-Nau - Australia

Polota-Nau will play his final test match against Samoa ahead of the World Cup as he brings down the curtain on a 15-year long career.

A regular for the Wallabies throught the years, Polota-Nau missed out on a third World Cup. Notable mentions: Dylan Hartley, Asafo Aumua and Rob Herring.

3. Owen Franks - (New Zealand)

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The double World Cup champion is possibly the biggest ommission in our XV having been a regular starter for the All Blacks under Steve Hansen.

Notable mentions for Samson Lee (Wales), Ramiro Herrera (Argentina) and Harry Williams (England).

4. Devin Toner - Ireland

Toner played 50 tests under since Joe Schmidt took charge of Ireland and was a real shock omission having run the Ireland lineout for much of that time.

Not many second rowers can feel as hard done by as Toner but Luke Jones will feel disappointed not to have made the Wallabies 31 man squad.

5. Felix Lambey - France

A star turn for France and probably one of the few odd calls made in the France World Cup squad.

Lambey was arguably one of France's top players during the Six Nations but has since fell down the pecking order.

Notable exclusion: Romain Taofifenua (France)

6. Shannon Frizell - New Zealand

Frizell looked solid at times for the All Blacks and looked to have tied down a place in the World Cup squad after stringing a few of those performances together.

However, Steve Hansen opted to take Vaea Fifita to the World Cup instead of the Highlander while also picking three openside flankers.

Liam Squire would take the jersey had he not ruled himself out of the World Cup. Injuries also see Marcell Coetzee and Brad Shields miss out.

7.  Jordi Murphy - Ireland

Most of the best openside flankers in the game will feature in the World Cup in Japan with biggest absentees being Sam Simmonds, Sean O’Brien and Dan Leavy all missing out through injury.

Unfortunately, Jordie Murphy is a notable absentee in Ireland's extremely competitive back row, along with Francois Cros for France.

8. Facundo Isa - Argentina

Warren Whiteley and Taulupe Faletau are two big absentees at the back of the scrum with both 8s ruled out through injury.

However, Facundo Isa was snubbed by Los Pumas head coach Mario Ledesma despite impressing on his return to test rugby in during the Rugby Championship.

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