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Sports

Titans and rivals England and Wales clash at Twickenham

media England vs Fiji in opening match of rugby World Cup Reuters / Russell Cheyne Livepic

"Pool of Death" rivals England and Wales face each other Saturday in crucial game, as both sides aim for the rugby World Cup’s quarter-final. The encounter at Twickenham is expected to be the most explosive contest of the World Cup so far and will renew one of rugby's oldest rivalries.

The teams have played 126 matches against each other, since 1881, and they are almost neck and neck - England have won 58 games, Wales 56.

England have had the upper hand in the last two encounters. The loser of Saturday’s match will likely need to win against world number two ranked Australia in order to secure a spot in the knockout phase.

"For us as a nation, this is the biggest game we've had for a long time against England," said Wales coach Warren Gatland.

Within Pool A, both teams have started with a win, England winning 35-11 against Fiji, and Wales 54-9 against Uruguay, but the stakes are really high Saturday and this match will most definitely be a game changer.

Among the 82,000 people that will bear witness to the upcoming clash, an estimated 20,000 are Wales fans.

All eyes are set on the evening game, but Saturday afternoon Italy played Canada for the third position in Pool D, behind Ireland and France, the winner automatically securing a spot for the 2019 World Cup. And South Africa take on Samoa for the fifth time, a week after its crushing defeat against Japan. The Springboks won the previous four games between the sides.

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