The Guardian: “Georgia and Portugal prove tectonic plates of global rugby are shifting”

  • Georgia’s national rugby team recorded a historic win over a Tier 1 squad in an away game, defeating Wales on Saturday in the third November test match at the Principality stadium in Cardiff, the capital city of Wales. Photograph: Simon King/ProSports/Shutterstock

Review by Salome Shikhashvili, 23 Nov 2022, Tbilisi,Georgia

The Guardian, one of Britain’s leading newspapers, has published an article about the recent successes of the national rugby teams of Georgia and Portugal and questions posed by their surge to the existing status quo of the global game.

Robert Kitson, the rugby union correspondent for the newspaper, said the historic results of Georgia’s defeat of Wales on Sunday and Portugal’s win over the United States last week prompted renewed questions about the structure of rugby’s top table before new nations league discussions.

“Forget England’s dramatic draw with the All Blacks or Ireland and France cementing their status at the top of the World Rugby rankings over the weekend. Instead raise a glass of Portuguese or Georgian wine in celebration of two historic results”, Kitson noted in the opinion piece.

Highlighting Georgia’s win in Cardiff last week followed the Lelos’ victory over Italy in Tbilisi this summer, the author said the results again activated the question of whether the team’s inclusion in the Six Nations tournament should be considered.

In the piece, the author also mentioned the 20-year-old Davit Niniashvili, playing for the French club Lyon, as one of the most promising young players in Europe, as well as the emergence of the Georgian referee Nika Amashukeli, who he said was “deservedly rising up the officiating pecking order”.

Read the full article here.