A satellite photo of typhoon Hagibis is seen during a press briefing on update relating to the anticipated impact of Typhoon Hagibis on the final round Rugby World Cup 2019 pool matches this weekend Thursday, Oct. 10, 2019, in Tokyo. (AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko) Photo: AP/Eugene Hoshiko
rugby world cup 2019

Scotland want flexibility for Japan match


Scotland says it expects contingency plans to be put in place to play its crucial match against Japan, even though World Rugby says there are no backup plans if it has to cancel the match on Sunday because of Typhoon Hagibis.

World Rugby says the game is going ahead in Yokohama as scheduled but it will be under review until hours before kickoff.

Scotland must beat Japan to reach the quarterfinals. If the game is cancelled, Japan, which leads Scotland by four points in the Pool A standings, will advance to its first quarterfinal and Scotland will miss out.

"We are in regular dialogue with World Rugby at all levels to work to ensure our fixture against Japan on Sunday can be played as planned. Public safety is the clear priority," Scottish Rugby said in a statement.

"With potential impact on our last Pool A fixture, Scottish Rugby fully expects contingency plans to be put in place to enable Scotland to contest for a place in the quarterfinals on the pitch, and will be flexible to accommodate this."

But the rules state that if a pool game can't be played on its scheduled date, it will be cancelled and logged as a draw with two points each to the teams.

World Rugby said: "Every effort is being made to ensure Sunday's matches will be played as scheduled. A thorough assessment of venues will take place after the typhoon has passed before a final decision is made on Sunday morning."

Tournament director Alan Gilpin said the rules of the tournament had been made clear to all teams prior to them signing their participation agreement, and that treating one game differently would be impossible, no matter the stakes, Kyodo News reported.

Scotland is scheduled to move to its Yokohama hotel on Friday.

Meanwhile, England is leaving Tokyo for Miyazaki on the southern island of Kyushu to avoid Typhoon Hagibis.

The England-France pool match scheduled for Saturday in Yokohama was cancelled by Rugby World Cup organizers because that is when and where the approaching storm, the most powerful this year, is expected to make landfall.

Miyazaki hosted England's pre-tournament training camp.

It's also not far from Oita, where England's quarterfinal against Wales or Australia is scheduled next week.

"We'll have a short camp in Miyazaki and then we're off to Oita," Jones said. "We have an exceptional record in two-week preparations."

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This could turn nasty, and not just the weather. Lets hope Scotland gets a chance to fight it out on the pitch.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

*even though World Rugby says there are no backup plans if it has to cancel the match on Sunday because of Typhoon Hagibis.*

Yet it says:

*World Rugby is monitoring a typhoon developing off the south coast of Japan and has a "robust "contingency plan in place should it impact any Rugby World Cup fixtures.*


How can cancelling a game be considered to be a robust contingency plan? It is an awful plan. Actually, I don't think it is fair to call it a plan at all.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Contigency plan doesn't mean that it is a plan for the match to take place, it can also mean it is a plan to keep people safe, lowing risks, reducing recovery time backup stadiums, closer locations etc.

People's life and safety is utmost importance, trains, roads, stadium all have to be safe for the matches to take place.

I'm quite sure the players will be forced to stay indoors due to risks of injury even if the typhoon's rating downgrade.

Things happen, deal with it.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Typhoon Haggis, surely?

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Saturday looks bad, but Sunday looks OK. Hopefully they play the game. Otherwise neigher team will be happy.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I agree with the Scottish position. The organisers have painted themselves into a corner with the inflexible policy, that now means they can’t treat this game differently and can’t reschedule it to later in the week when it will be fine and sunny....

2 ( +2 / -0 )

It's essential for the game to be played one way or another. Even if it's in a random indoor stadium with no crowd. No game would ruin the tournament and ensure Japan is remembered as the team that didn't earn their place in the last 8.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

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