Rugby World Cup 2019: Japan vs Scotland game to go ahead following Typhoon Hagibis

Fans will also be allowed to attend the match after the International Stadium Yokohama passed all inspections on Sunday morning following one of the worst tropical typhoons in Japanese history

Jack de Menezes
Sunday 13 October 2019 06:52
Streets and cars flooded as Typhoon Hagibis nears Japan

The Rugby World Cup match between Japan and Scotland will go ahead on Sunday at the International Stadium Yokohama, it has been confirmed.

World Rugby announced on Sunday that the pitch passed an inspection early in the morning, despite record levels of rainfall the previous day in which some areas experienced nearly one metre of rainfall in 48 hours.

A further assessment decided that conditions were safe enough for fans to be allowed to attend the match, which kicks off at 7:45pm Japan Standard Time [11:45pm BST]. Tournament organisers received confirmation from local travel authorities that the appropriate public transport proficiencies are in place to ensure supporters can safely travel to the stadium, though World Rugby did still urge caution to those planning on attending and advised fans to arrive as early as possible.

A World Rugby statement read: “The decision was taken following a comprehensive assessment of the venue and associated infrastructure on Sunday morning in partnership with the host city. World Rugby and the Japan Rugby 2019 Organising Committee would like to thank everyone involved for their significant efforts to enable the match to be played as scheduled following one of largest and most powerful typhoons to hit Japan in recent years.

“Fans attending Sunday night’s match are advised to check travel operator information before departing and plan to arrive early as it may take longer than usual to enter the stadium. Fans should also expect a significantly reduced level of spectator service in terms of catering and merchandise sales owing to limitations on venue staff availability as a result of the typhoon.

“To ensure the best-possible fan experience, the decision has been made to allow fans to bring non-alcoholic beverage into the venue for personal consumption. All drinks will be decanted into cups at the point of entry. This change in policy will only be operational for this match. As per the earlier announcement, fans are permitted to bring food into venues for personal consumption.”

The damage caused by Typhoon Hagibis, one of the worst tropical cyclones to ever hit Japan in terms of size and power, led to World Rugby cancelling the opening Pool B match between Namibia and Canada on Sunday.

At least four people have died following the tropical cyclone and a further 17 are missing following widespread flooding, electrical outages, intense rainfall, powerful winds and a tornado.

But the remaining three matches are now set to go ahead, with USA vs Tonga and Wales vs Uruguay preceding the pool-stage finale between the tournament hosts and Scotland, to decide who joins Ireland in emerging from Pool A.

Staff were in place early on Sunday morning to carry out a full inspection of the stadium, which can hold up to 70,000 fans and was due to host England's final pool game against France on Saturday that was cancelled due to the typhoon.

Upon arrival, officials discovered large levels of flooding due to the nearby flood defences of Yokohama City, but World Rugby has insisted that fans should not be alarmed by this as it is normal for the area.

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