November 9 down the years
Wilkinson downs All Blacks at Twickenham
England's Jonny Wilkinson is tackled by New Zealand's Doug Howlett at Twickenham on this day in 2002
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In a dress rehearsal for the knock-out stages of the Rugby World Cup a year later, England began a trio of victories over Tri-Nations teams beating New Zealand 31-28 at Twickenham. Fly-half Jonny Wilkinson was the star of the show with a personal tally of 21 points thanks to a brilliant solo try, three conversions, two penalties and a drop goal. Lewis Moody and Ben Cohen also crossed for the hosts but the All Blacks responded superbly with tries from Jonah Lomu and Danny Lee to set up a dramatic finale. "England coach Clive Woodward hailed his No.10 as, "outstanding" following their hard-fought victory.
Keith Wood, in his last Test match, led Ireland to defeat against France in a Rugby World Cup quarter-final in Melbourne. Ireland were out-classed 43-21 by a dominant French side with Olivier Magne, Christophe Dominici, Imanol Harinordoquy and Jean-Jacques Crenca all scoring tries for Les Bleus. Fly-half Frederic Michalak weighed in with 23 points. A brace of tries for Brian O'Driscoll and another from Kevin Maggs proved to be little more than consolation. One of Ireland most iconic players, Wood won a total of 58 caps for his country and featured in five Test for the Lions over two tours in 1997 and 2001 - finishing with an impressive tally of 15 tries. Later the same day, England knocked Wales out of the tournament with a thrilling 28-17 victory in their last-eight clash in Brisbane.
Wales awarded caps against Fiji for the first time and scored seven tries in a 40-3 win at Cardiff. Phil Davies crossed for two of the home side's tries with Adrian Hadley, captain Terry Holmes, Billy James, David Pickering and Mark Titley also touching down.
In one of the best displays of their tour, Wilson Whineray's Fifth All Blacks swamped the London Counties 27-0 at Twickenham scoring four wonderful tries in the last twelve minutes.
Wally Mills scored a try hat-trick for the touring Springboks who defeat a strong Midland Counties side 25-3 at Leicester.
Tug Wilson, former Met Police and England flanker, was roped in to play as an emergency wing for Middlesex in a 25-9 County Championship defeat of Surrey ... literally hours before emigrating to Rhodesia and a new life.