Japan World Cup Rugby betting preview
Japan are at odds of $251 to win the Rugby World Cup on home soil and while we don’t believe that’s possible we can see some opportunities to back the host nation.
They are rated around $5 to advance to the quarter-finals for the first time and, with a fanatical crowd behind them plus a rock-solid preparation, we can see them getting out of the pool stages.
Who can forget their wonderful performances in the 2015 World Cup in England when they won three of their four matches only to miss out on points differential. The Brave Blossoms’ run included that memorable 34-32 win over South Africa, who loom as potential quarter-final opponents.
Japan have been big movers in the ranks of world rugby over the past decade and their exciting style of play is sure to cause headaches for the likes of Pool A big guns Ireland and Scotland.
They dominated the Pacific Nations Cup and have been preparing the squad diligently for this massive event on home soil.
Clearly they are one of the teams to watch.
Where Japan will finish in the 2019 Rugby World Cup
WGL prediction: Quarter-finals. Yes, that’s right. We think the Cherry Blossoms can cause a surprise and make it out of the group. That would be a great result for the host nation and will likely require an upset win over Scotland as well as the expected defeats of Russia and Samoa.
Previous best World Cup result: Pool stage in all eight previous World Cups.
Japan’s Rugby World Cup draw
Match 1: Japan v Russia, Friday, Sep 20, Pool A, Tokyo Stadium
Match 14: Japan v Ireland, Saturday, Sep 28, Pool A, Shizuoka Stadium Ecopa
Match 26: Japan v Samoa, Saturday, Oct 5, Pool A, City of Toyota Stadium
Match 40: Japan v Scotland, Sunday, Oct 13, Pool A, International Stadium Yokohama
Japan’s most recent results
July 27: Japan 34 d Fiji 21, Pacific Nations Cup, Kamaishi
August 3: Japan 41 d Tonga 7, Pacific Nations Cup, Osaka
August 10: Japan 34 d USA 20, Pacific Nations Cup, Suva
September 6: South Africa 41 d Japan 7, Kumagaya Rugby Ground, Kumagaya, Japan
Japan’s record against Pool A rivals
Ireland: Played 7: won 0, lost 7. Points for: 118, Points against: 336
Scotland: Played 7: won 0, lost 7. Points for: 84, Points against: 313
Samoa: Played 15: won 4, lost 11. Points for: 273, Points against: 482
Russia: Played 6: won 5, lost 1. Points for: 269, Points against: 108
Japan squad for the 2019 Rugby World Cup
Coach: Jamie Joseph
Forwards: Keita Inagaki, Yusuke Kizu, Koo Ji-won, Isileli Nakajima, Asaeli Ai Valu, Takuya Kitade, Atsushi Sakata, Shota Horie, Luke Thompson, Wimpie van der Walt, Uwe Helu, James Moore, Hendrik Tui, Yoshitaka Tokunaga, Michael Leitch (captain), Pieter Labuschagne, Kazuki Himeno, Amanaki Mafi.
Backs: Kaito Shigeno, Fumiaki Tanaka, Yutaka Nagare, Yu Tamura, Rikiya Matsuda, Kenki Fukuoka, Ataata Moeakiola, Lomano Lemeki, William Tupou, Ryoto Nakamura, Timothy Lafaele, Kotaro Matsushima, Ryohei Yamanaka.
Leading try-scorer prediction for Japan
Kenki Fukuoka: The flying winger has an incredible step. His fortunes of course will ride along with those of his team, but his performance in the decisive match of the Pacific Nations Cup was phenomenal. He scored one brilliant try, had a hand in another and might easily have scored a couple more as the Blossoms beat the USA. A real entertainer when he gets the ball in hand.
Japan predictions – Blossoms to bloom?
The top 10-ranked Japanese have never beaten Ireland or Scotland previously and will have to end at least one of those droughts to advance to the quarter-finals, you would think. Their record against Samoa does not look good, but the recent record is much more attractive. That is a match they will have to take very seriously or their campaign could quickly come off the rails. Their clashes with Scotland and Ireland will be worth watching no matter what time it is wherever you are around the world.
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