2019 Rugby World Cup Fixtures & Draw

The fixtures and draw for the 2019 Rugby Union World Cup will be announced closer to the start of the tournament. The 2019 Rugby World Cup will be played in Japan, the first time the competition will be played in Asia.

The tournament will run for over a month between mid-September and early November 2019. The opening match will be played on Friday, September 20 at Tokyo Stadium in the nation’s capital, with the final to be played at Yokohama Stadium in Kanagawa on Saturday, November 2.

The Australian broadcaster for the 2019 World Cup has not yet been announced, however, during the 2015 edition, every game was shown live on Foxtel and streamed on Foxtel Play, with some games also televised on the Nine Network’s free-to-air channel, GEM.


The pools for the tournament were announced on Wednesday May 10, 2017 in Japan. The details of how the pools were decided are below, however here are the groups as decided for the tournament with qualifying teams still to be announced.

Pool A
1. Ireland
2. Scotland
3. Japan
4. Europe 1
5. Playoff Winner

Pool B
1. New Zealand
2. South Africa
3. Italy
4. Africa 1
5. Repechage winner

Pool C
1. England
2. France
3. Argentina
4. Americas 1
5. Oceania 2

Pool D
1. Australia
2. Wales
3. Georgia
4. Oceania 1
5. Americas 2


Twenty nations will compete in the 2019 World Cup, being split into four groups of five teams each.

Twelve sides automatically qualified for the 2019 World Cup as a result of finishing in the top three in their groups in the 2015 tournament. They were split into three bands based on their rankings, to be distributed evenly across the groups in 2019:

Band 1: New Zealand, England, Australia and Ireland
Band 2: Scotland, France, South Africa and Wales
Band 3: Argentina, Japan, Georgia, Italy

The remaining eight teams are still yet to be determined and will be decided through a complex series of qualification matches. The final qualifier will be confirmed in November 2018.

Band 4: Oceania 1, Americas 1, Europe 1 and Africa 1
Band 5: Oceania 2, Americas 2, Playoff winner, Repechage winner

The qualification process for each of those teams is as follows:

Oceania 1: The side with the best record in the Pacific Nations Cup over 2016 and 2017 – one of Fiji, Tonga or Samoa. Fiji are the best-placed side, having won the competition in 2016.

Americas 1: The winner of a home-and-away playoff between Canada and the USA.

Europe 1: The team with the best record from the Rugby Europe Championship over 2017 and 2018, excluding Georgia, who are among the 12 automatic qualifiers.

Africa 1: The winner of the Rugby Africa Championship.

Oceania 2: The team with the second-best record in the Pacific Nations Cup over 2016 and 2017.

Americas 2: Winner of a playoff between the loser of the Canada versus USA play-off and the highest-ranked South American team, excluding Argentina.

Playoff winner: The winner of a playoff between the third-placed side from the Pacific Nations Cup team versus the highest-ranked European team which hasn’t already qualified.

Repechage winner: The winner of a four-team qualification tournament. The four teams will be: the loser of the Oceania/Europe playoff, the loser of the Americas 2 playoff, the runner-up in the Rugby Africa Championship and the winner of a playoff between the highest-placed Asian team, excluding Japan, and the winner of the Oceania Cup.


There are 12 venues in Japan that will play host to World Cup matches in 2019, ranging from the Sapporo Dome in the north of the country to Kumamoto Stadium in the south-west.

The complete list of stadiums is as follows:

  • Sapporo Dome, Sapporo City
  • Kamaishi Recovery Memorial Stadium, Iwate Prefecture/Kamaishi City
  • Kumagaya Rugby Ground, Saitama Prefecture/Kumagaya City
  • New National Stadium Japan, Tokyo
  • International Stadium Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture/Yokohama City
  • Ogasayama Sports Park Ecopa Stadium, Shizuoka Prefecture
  • Toyota Stadium, Aichi Prefecture/Toyota City
  • Hanazono Rugby Stadium, Osaka Prefecture/Higashi Osaka City
  • Kobe City Misaki Park Stadium, Kobe City
  • Hakatanomori Football Stadium, Fukuoka City
  • Kumamoto Prefectural Athletic Stadium, Kumamoto Prefecture/Kumamoto City
  • Oita Stadium, Oita Prefecture

Last updated: 10 May, 2017