World Rugby cancels matches due to Typhoon Hagabis
October 10, 2019 3:28 pm
World Rugby has decided to cancel matches of the 2019 Rugby World Cup due to safety grounds as Typhoon Hagibis is expected to disrupt the matches.
After extensive evaluation, World Rugby and the Japan Rugby 2019 Organising Committee have announced an update regarding the predicted impact of Typhoon Hagibis on this weekend’s Rugby World Cup 2019 pool matches.
The Pool A match between Ireland and Samoa in Fukuoka will be played as scheduled while the Pool B match between New Zealand and Italy and the Pool C match between England and France has been cancelled.
Pool D match between Australia and Georgia in Shizuoka to be played as scheduled
Based on the latest detailed information from the tournament’s independent weather experts, Hagibis is predicted to be the biggest typhoon of the 2019 season and is highly likely to cause considerable disruption in the Tokyo, Yokohama and City of Toyota areas throughout Saturday, including likely public transport shutdown or disruption.
As a result, World Rugby and the Japan Rugby 2019 Organising Committee have taken the difficult, but right decision to cancel matches in the affected areas on safety grounds.
The impacted teams have been informed and are understanding.
For matches that do not go ahead as scheduled, two points will be awarded to each team in line with tournament rules.
It is an exceptional, complex and rapidly evolving situation and team and public safety is the number one priority.
World Rugby Chief Operating Officer and Tournament Director Alan Gilpin said when addressing the media: “This is a complex and dynamic situation which we have been monitoring extremely closely with the assistance of our weather information experts. We are now in a position to accurately predict the likely impact of Typhoon Hagibis on Rugby World Cup fixtures this weekend.
“While making every possible effort to put in place a contingency plan that would enable all of Saturday’s matches to be played, it would be grossly irresponsible to leave teams, fans, volunteers and other tournament personnel exposed during what is predicted to be a severe typhoon.
“As a result, we have taken the decision to cancel some matches in order to ensure the safety of all involved. It is the right thing to do, and comes with the support of all stakeholders, including the teams.
“We fully appreciate that England, France, New Zealand and Italy fans will be disappointed, but we trust they will appreciate that their safety must come first. They will be entitled to a full refund on their match tickets.
“Our message for all fans in Japan for Rugby World Cup is to heed all official advice, stay indoors throughout Saturday and do not attempt to travel on the day.”