The All Blacks were this morning crowned world champions, after the French team unexpectedly pulled out of Sunday’s final.
New Zealand beat Australia last night in a commanding and dominating performance.
French coach Marc Lievremont said his players had watched the game on television and had been awed and frightened by the power and ferocity of the All Blacks effort.
“We could see we had no chance,” said Lievremont, through a translator.
“Before the final whistle had even been blown we were being written off, and told how we would lose the final by fifty point.
“We wanted to be gracious losers, and allow the New Zealand team to begin their celebrations a week early.”
French captain Thierry Dusautoir said he was sorry they would not be playing on Sunday.
“What kind of spectacle would it be for people to watch? What chance do we have when almost all the armchair experts say we are going to be smashed?” asked the brave French flanker.
“Everyone knows that when France goes into a World Cup knockout game against the All Blacks the only thing to be certain of is an overwhelming victory for the New Zealand team.
“We thank the public of New Zealand for their hospitality and congratulate their fine team.”
Rugby writer and former All Black halfback Darcy Monrovia said he was not surprised by the decision of the French to default.
“It was a sensible choice,” wrote Monrovia in this morning’s New Zealand Herald, “and it will not overly disrupt the New Zealand team’s plans for the week. They would have been planning a relaxing week of golf-playing and boozing leading into the easiest of finals.
“Now at least they don’t have to interrupt their celebrations with an annoying appearance at Eden Park next week to complete formalities.”
French coach Marc Lievremont was now predicting a glorious period of New Zealand Rugby World Cup dominance.
“I expect they will win the next five tournaments, and easily,” said Lievremont.
The International Rugby Board has confirmed it will not penalise France for pulling out of the final.
“It’s the only thing they could have done. They had no chance against the All Blacks,” said IRB chief Mike Miller.
“Just like in 1999 and 2007. But his time was different.”