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Japan vs Ireland: Rugby World Cup final score, highlights

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28th September, 2019
5916 Reads
Final Score
Japan vs Ireland
19 12

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Hosts Japan will take on Ireland – the number two ranked side in the world – as both teams look to build on their opening game wins.

Despite the obvious gap between the two sides, the Irish are taking the Japanese threat very seriously. Join The Roar for live scores and a blog of what promises to be a thrilling match starting from 5:15pm AEST on Saturday.

The Irish have picked a side that has quality throughout and while star fly-half Johnny Sexton is rested having picked up a sore quad, Joe Schmidt has brought back in plenty of experience in the form of Rob Kearney and Keith Earls.

Both will appear in their third World Cup and look for them to be busy as replacement No.10 Jack Carty and Conor Murray bombard the Japanese with high balls. Against Russia, Japan were poor under the bomb and Ireland won’t have failed to spot this.

For the host nation there are some changes with prop Jiwon Koo, lock Luke Thompson and full back Ryohei Yamanaka earning promotion from the bench in the last game.

Some have been surprised that heroic leader Michael Leitch will not start but that could be because Jamie Joseph is holding him back for the crucial games still to come.

Bringing some new power to the pack will be Amanaki Mafi who returns to No.8 after injury. Japan will need a big performance from him in order to get the quick go forward that they’ll need to force back Ireland’s mean defence.

There has been some engaging, competitive banter between the sides over the past few weeks with one of the Japan camp suggesting that the Irish scrum is illegal and Lomano Lemeki coming out and publicly saying that he believes Japan will deliver another World Cup upset with a 33-10 win.

To get that win Japan will need to pay a much better game. They missed 19 tackles and gave away 18 turnovers. If Russia can force these errors then who knows what Ireland can do to the Cherry Blossoms.


Despite Lemeki’s bold prediction it’s almost impossible to see this one turning out as anything but a good Ireland win.

Ireland by 15.

Join The Roar for live scores and a blog of what promises to be a thrilling match starting from 5:15pm AEST on Saturday.

Where: Shizuoka Stadium Ecopa, Shizuoka Prefecture
Date: Saturday September 28
Kick-off: 5:15pm AEST
TV: Foxsports
Betting: Japan $9, Ireland $1.06

15 Ryohei Yamanaka
14 Kotaro Matsushima
13 Timothy Lafaele
12 Ryoto Nakamura
11 William Tupou
10 Yu Tamura
9 Yutaka Nagare
8 Amanaki Mafi
7 Pieter Labuschagne (c)
6 Kazuki Himeno
5 James Moore
4 Luke Thompson
3 Koo Ji-won
2 Shota Horie
1 Keita Inagaki

16 Atsushi Sakate
17 Isileli Nakajima
18 Asaeli Ai Valu
19 Wimpie van der Walt
20 Michael Leitch
21 Fumiaki Tanaka
22 Rikiya Matsuda
23 Lomano Lemeki

15 Rob Kearney
14 Keith Earls
13 Garry Ringrose
12 Chris Farrell
11 Jacob Stockdale
10 Jack Carty
9 Conor Murray
8 CJ Stander
7 Josh Van der Flier
6 Peter O’Mahony
5 James Ryan
4 Iain Henderson
3 Tadhg Furlong
2 Rory Best (c)
1 Cian Healy

16 Sean Cronin
17 David Kilcoyne
18 Andrew Porter
19 Tadgh Beirne
20 Rhys Ruddock
21 Luke McGrath
22 Joey Carbery
23 Jordan Larmour


Referee: Angus Gardner
Assistant referees: Jerome Garces, Matthew Carley
TMO: Ben Skeen

2019 World Cup Form
Japan – W
Ireland – W

All time
Played 7
Japan won 0
Ireland won 7

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