Japan are likely to qualify for their first quarter-finals appearance and Scotland will cruelly miss out on the playoffs as Typhoon Hagibis causes chaos to the Rugby World Cup.
Tournament organisers were to explain their contingency plans on Thursday (4pm NZ time) but British media were reporting that two key matches in Tokyo and Yokohama this weekend – England v France and Scotland v Japan – will be cancelled.
That leaves the teams sharing the points and major frustration for Scotland who won’t have a chance to beat Japan and claim a quarter-final berth.
Ireland, who are due to play Samoa in their final pool match, would likely be the other Pool A team to go through.
* Typhoon tipped to wreak havoc
* Scotland have big win over Russia
* Argentina finish on a high
* ABs labelled ‘cynical cheats’
* Tall Wallabies face early exits
* England hit by injury, illness
* French revolt in captaincy row
* Download Stuff’s RWC wallchart
* RWC results and pool standings
However, The Telegraph has reported that World Rugby will likely cancel the Ireland v Samoa match as well to ensure competition “integrity”.
The Times reported that Scotland coach Gregor Townsend had been lobbying for Scotland’s game to be relocated to Kobe, 420 miles away, and outside of the path of the storm, but it is understood that relocation has been ruled out, along with delaying the match by 24 hours.
Retaining the status quo on the points table with points shared around would see Japan top Pool A, meaning a quarterfinal against the Springboks, while Ireland would finish second and play the All Blacks.
England and France have both qualified for the playoffs so the ramifications aren’t so extreme, though they were playing for the top spot in Pool C.
The Times said “England’s game against France on Saturday has become the first match in Rugby World Cup history to be cancelled”.
“After a day when Tokyo was shaken by two earthquakes, World Rugby held emergency meetings late into the night and scrapped plans to move England’s game to Oita, a city 1000km southwest of Tokyo where both teams will play a quarter-final.”
The fact that the match would have been played behind closed doors so as to discourage fans from travelling did not meet with universal approval from all stakeholders, including broadcasters.
A cancellation will cause an uproar in Scotland, predicted The Telegraph.
“Scotland would feel mightily aggrieved that they did not have the chance to rescue their campaign after an opening-weekend loss to Ireland by defeating the high-flying Brave Blossoms. Scotland would be incensed that their campaign had seemingly been brought to a premature conclusion,” the British paper’s report said.
They reported that there were still some doubts around New Zealand’s match against Italy in Toyota which is 241km to the south of Tokyo.
A cancellation of the All Blacks’ match and sharing points with Italy would see the New Zealand go ahead of South Africa and finish top of their pool.
Source link : https://www.stuff.co.nz/sport/rugby/rugby-world-cup/rwc-2019-japan/116458660/rugby-world-cup-japan-win-scotland-lose-in-typhoon-hagibib-chaos
Publish date : 2019-10-10 00:06:00