Ukraine end Lithuania's World Cup dream
May 9, 2010
The race for Rugby World Cup 2011 continues for Ukraine © Getty Images
Lithuania's Rugby World Cup dream was ended by a 27-16 loss to Ukraine on Saturday.
The European Nations Cup Division 3A champions, who notched a world record 18th consecutive Test victory a fortnight ago with a 77-5 mauling of Serbia, tackled their Division 2A counterparts at the Savivaldbye Stadium in Siauliai, but were unable to add the finishing touches to a 19th victory.
Ukraine pulled ahead early, with scrum-half Sergii Ianchyi ending with a 17-point haul. Hooker Mykola Rirsanov and centre Oleg Kosariev were the other try-scorers. They now meet Romania, who finished third in Division 1, in a two-legged clash to determine Europe's representative in the cross-continental play-off to confirm the 20th and final qualifier for next year's showpiece event in New Zealand.
The winner of that game will face Tunisia home and away to determine the finalists, with that side facing the winners of a showdown between Uruguay and the runners-up in the Asian Five Nations, currently Hong Kong after three rounds. The winners will enter Pool B along with Argentina, England, Scotland and Georgia.
The controversial tackling technique will be in full swing in Dublin on Sunday, writes Conor O'Shea, and could be a decisive factor for Ireland
"This team deserves to be recognised as the greatest of all time." Huw Richards looks at Gareth Edwards' final match for Wales
The two leading contenders for the best modern open-side flanker go head to head in Paris on Saturday. John Taylor assesses the tale of the tape