Japan 2019 - Pool A

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Post by LondonTiger on Mon 09 Sep 2019, 12:10 pm

TeamPlayedWonDrawnLostTriesPFPA+/-BPPoints
Ireland
Japan
Russia
Samoa
Scotland

20 September 2019     Japan v Russia                          Tokyo Stadium, Chōfu
22 September 2019     Ireland v Scotland                      International Stadium Yokohama, Yokohama
24 September 2019     Russia v Samoa                         Kumagaya Rugby Stadium, Kumagaya
28 September 2019     Japan v Ireland                          Shizuoka Stadium Ecopa, Fukuroi
30 September 2019     Scotland v Samoa                      Kobe Misaki Stadium, Kobe
3 October 2019           Ireland v Russia                         Kobe Misaki Stadium, Kobe
5 October 2019           Japan v Samoa                          City of Toyota Stadium, Toyota
9 October 2019           Scotland v Russia                       Shizuoka Stadium Ecopa, Fukuroi
12 October 2019         Ireland v Samoa                         Fukuoka Hakatanomori Stadium, Fukuoka
13 October 2019         Japan v Scotland                         International Stadium Yokohama, Yokohama

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Post by Pete330v2 on Mon 09 Sep 2019, 12:33 pm

As a marker I just have to say well done on these LT, a handy guide to each group is always welcomed.

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Post by rodders on Mon 09 Sep 2019, 1:27 pm

Some interesting scheduling going on there, Japan get Ireland after a 6 day turnaround from Scotland, whilst they have 8 and Scotland after a 4 day turnaround from facing Samoa...
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Post by Ninjarugby on Mon 09 Sep 2019, 1:47 pm

Well the way the 2015 fixtures worked out didn't exactly suit Ireland.
This is the opposite to a degree. Supposedly the two toughest fixtures first.
If they get to the 1/4 final with 28 fit players & have an 8 day turnaround it could benefit Ireland.
Throw the kitchen sink at whoever they play with no regrets. As it could be Best's last international game & possibly a few others if Ireland play to their best ability & don't succeed I wouldn't mind as it was such a bad way to go out last time.
I wonder will Heaslip be as happy when he see's the 1/4 final lineup. I really rate SA this time around.

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Post by BamBam on Mon 09 Sep 2019, 1:58 pm

Pete330v2 wrote:As a marker I just have to say well done on these LT, a handy guide to each group is always welcomed.

Agreed, thanks LT

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Post by LondonTiger on Mon 09 Sep 2019, 2:17 pm

Other two to come shortly.

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Post by bsando on Mon 09 Sep 2019, 2:49 pm

Cheers LT, great idea!

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Post by LondonTiger on Mon 09 Sep 2019, 2:51 pm

Should I add Squads to the OP (when time permits)?

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Post by SecretFly on Mon 09 Sep 2019, 3:37 pm

Call me peevish but the Scots are getting an armchair ride here!

I think they're the only top or second seeded side that gets to play the same stadium twice in the pool stages and it's the bloody biggest one too!

Plush treatment what ho! Probably tartan towels in operation for the entire duration of the WC at Yokohama. Pichot is getting another 'outraged' letter from me this instant!

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Post by rodders on Mon 09 Sep 2019, 3:41 pm

Ninjarugby wrote:Well the way the 2015 fixtures worked out didn't exactly suit Ireland.
This is the opposite to a degree. Supposedly the two toughest fixtures first.
If they get to the 1/4 final with 28 fit players & have an 8 day turnaround it could benefit Ireland.
Throw the kitchen sink at whoever they play with no regrets. As it could be Best's last international game & possibly a few others if Ireland play to their best ability & don't succeed I wouldn't mind as it was such a bad way to go out last time.
I wonder will Heaslip be as happy when he see's the 1/4 final lineup. I really rate SA this time around.

Interesting Rassie hiring Felix Jones recently, it looks like they are expecting an all green showdown in the QF.
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Post by SecretFly on Mon 09 Sep 2019, 3:52 pm

Joe packed Felix's lunch and even dropped in a lost 'Plan A' into his suitcase when Felix was distracted by Nucifora wishing him well.

Bon voyage, Felix and dirty belly laughs from the two boyos when he left the room.

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Post by George Carlin on Tue 10 Sep 2019, 8:47 am

SecretFly wrote:Call me peevish but the Scots are getting an armchair ride here!

I think they're the only top or second seeded side that gets to play the same stadium twice in the pool stages and it's the bloody biggest one too!

Plush treatment what ho!  Probably tartan towels in operation for the entire duration of the WC at Yokohama.  Pichot is getting another 'outraged' letter from me this instant!
Ah come on, Fly. We need all of the help that we can get.

Excellent threads these, by the way.
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Post by BamBam on Tue 10 Sep 2019, 10:50 am

This might be controversial, but s anyone else a little disappointed that the opening game is Japan vs Russia? After all the build up, the showpiece opening game should have been Japan against one of Ireland / Scotland imo

Obviously its in the European working day anyway, but just think the occasion deserved a little more glitz

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Post by carpet baboon on Tue 10 Sep 2019, 10:53 am

BamBam wrote:This might be controversial, but s anyone else a little disappointed that the opening game is Japan vs Russia? After all the build up, the showpiece opening game should have been Japan against one of Ireland / Scotland imo

Obviously its in the European working day anyway, but just think the occasion deserved a little more glitz

Have any hosts ever had the opening game against a tier 1 nation?

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Post by BamBam on Tue 10 Sep 2019, 11:00 am

Good question. Opening games have been:

1987 - NZ v Italy
1991 - England v NZ
1995 - SA v Australia
1999 - Wales v Argentina
2003 - Australia v Argentina
2007 - France v Argentina
2011 - NZ v Tonga
2015 - England v Fiji

This definitely looks the weakest of the opening games, obviously Japan being the hosts affects that but still think a Tier 1 side should have been the opposition

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Post by EWT Spoons on Tue 10 Sep 2019, 11:12 am

I assume Japan had some say in their fixture placement (given how they have fallen for them) so they probably wanted an 'easer' fixture up first to get off to a win. Get a nice win under their belt and it'll boost the players confidence and give the fans something to get behind.

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Post by Pete330v2 on Tue 10 Sep 2019, 11:13 am

Perhaps there's a school of thought that with Japan being our gracious hosts we should throw them a lamb to kick off their tournament on a high note. I don't know what the Japanese reaction would be to having to start against a tier one nation but they do, as a nation, react to things very differently than us westerners. Take the tattoo issue for example, we barely take notice yet they take great offence. Who knows the inside machinations of the tournament organization and the reasons there of.

Excuse the ramble.

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Post by poddy89 on Tue 10 Sep 2019, 11:45 am

Just read that its typhoon season in Japan and if any game is flooded out in will not be rescheduled instead it will just be a draw.

Could see any one in the group draw with Russia. Or maybe nz v Namibia could end in a draw.

Doesn't seem great

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Post by Collapse2005 on Tue 10 Sep 2019, 12:07 pm

Looks like the storm will have passed by the 20th of September.

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Post by Old Man on Tue 10 Sep 2019, 12:12 pm

This pool is pretty much a foregone conclusion. Ireland to top and Japan hoping to beat Scotland.

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Post by poddy89 on Tue 10 Sep 2019, 1:08 pm

It is still going to be the season though and is a chance of games being disrupted. I hope not as it would be quite unfair. Even for a fan that travels out there for a game that could potentially not happen.

Not sure why they would have the world cup in a high risk weather season. I just hope it doesn't play any part in this world cup.

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Post by tigertattie on Tue 10 Sep 2019, 1:18 pm

Old Man wrote:This pool is pretty much a foregone conclusion. Ireland to top and Japan hoping to beat Scotland.

Not much in the WC can be a foregone conclusion, just as England, Wales and Ireland about previous tourneys for examples.

Even I have Ireland as favourites to win vs Scotland but Ireland could lose to Japan just like Scotland could. Even Samoa could still have a say in the outcome.

Ireland could play their soak everything up game plan and fail to get a bonus point in the group games (however unlikely) but win each game. Scotland could then get 2BPs against Ireland and then win the other matches with a BP and would be top of the group!

Likewise Scotland and Ireland could be "rained off" resulting in a draw!!!

People need to remember that Scotland is one of few teams that have nilled an opponent in the WC. In fact, other than SA, we're the only team to have nilled more than one nation in a WC game.

But we're also the only nation who have nilled a team but also been nilled by someone else.

We are Scotland. We are predictably unpredictable!
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Post by Old Man on Tue 10 Sep 2019, 1:20 pm

tigertattie wrote:
Old Man wrote:This pool is pretty much a foregone conclusion. Ireland to top and Japan hoping to beat Scotland.

Not much in the WC can be a foregone conclusion, just as England, Wales and Ireland about previous tourneys for examples.

Even I have Ireland as favourites to win vs Scotland but Ireland could lose to Japan just like Scotland could. Even Samoa could still have a say in the outcome.

Ireland could play their soak everything up game plan and fail to get a bonus point in the group games (however unlikely) but win each game.  Scotland could then get 2BPs against Ireland and then win the other matches with a BP and would be top of the group!

Likewise Scotland and Ireland could be "rained off" resulting in a draw!!!

People need to remember that Scotland is one of few teams that have nilled an opponent in the WC. In fact, other than SA, we're the only team to have nilled more than one nation in a WC game.

But we're also the only nation who have nilled a team but also been nilled by someone else.

We are Scotland. We are predictably unpredictable!

All true, but ultimately the odds are very much in favour of Ireland and Scotland to go through.

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Post by BamBam on Tue 10 Sep 2019, 1:26 pm

tigertattie wrote:

But we're also the only nation who have nilled a team but also been nilled by someone else.


I've got to say, I absolutely love that stat, and it really does sum up Scotland's mixed fortunes!

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Post by Ninjarugby on Tue 10 Sep 2019, 1:41 pm

I think Japan were always going to get the so called most beatable team in the group first off to keep it interesting & give them some momentum going into the Irish game & just like a classic suspense film Japan still in the group when playing their last game against Scotland to see who goes through either 1st or 2nd/3rd.
I haven't seen anybody mention Samoa. Does anybody think they have enough to spring any kind of surprise that will maybe have an effect on the group?
Also do you think Schmidt will use the entire 31 players for the 1st 2 games all going well?

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Post by rodders on Tue 10 Sep 2019, 1:51 pm

I think people are writing off Scotland a bit, they could well win this group.

Ireland may have the edge up front but Scotland have the threat out wide to cause real problems, especially on fast pitches and could disrupt our line out.
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Post by Rugby Fan on Tue 10 Sep 2019, 1:56 pm

poddy89 wrote:...Not sure why they would have the world cup in a high risk weather season...
You can get typhoons any time of year, although more tend to form between May and October. It's just normal life for people living across this part of Asia. Every major international sporting event - including two Olympics, one football World Cup and two World Athletics Championships - has been scheduled during the May to October window of typhoon season. World Rugby haven't been reckless, we'll just be unlucky if the tournament ends up in the path of one.

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Post by Ninjarugby on Tue 10 Sep 2019, 2:12 pm

rodders wrote:I think people are writing off Scotland a bit, they could well win this group.

Ireland may have the edge up front but Scotland have the threat out wide to cause real problems, especially on fast pitches and could disrupt our line out.  

I seriously doubt Schmidt will allow anybody to look further than the Scotland game and with all due respect to Scotland the last few times Ireland lost they were taken by surprise in 2017 by Scotland's intensity & were blown away in the first 20 minutes and before that it was the end of ROG's career, (not sure if it was his last international game).
I expect Ireland to keep it tight & for Ireland to try and pummel Scotland having Henshaw/Aki 12/13. Pity Hew Jones didn't make their squad. I do expect Scotland to target Stockdale though.

It would be crazy for Ireland to get drawn into an open game. Look what they did to England having been so far behind. I think we might see a similar performance/intensity to 2011 when Ireland played Australia.

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Post by Collapse2005 on Tue 10 Sep 2019, 2:21 pm

I agree Scotland could win it alright but I think Ireland will

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Post by tigertattie on Wed 11 Sep 2019, 10:39 am

Collapse2005 wrote:I agree Scotland could win it alright but I think Ireland will

Oi, stop saying things like we could win. It just gets our hopes up which is then crushed when we do a Scotland and run around like headless chickens and lose!

Apparently we're dark horses!
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Post by Pete330v2 on Wed 11 Sep 2019, 11:38 am

tigertattie wrote:
Collapse2005 wrote:I agree Scotland could win it alright but I think Ireland will

Oi, stop saying things like we could win. It just gets our hopes up which is then crushed when we do a Scotland and run around like headless chickens and lose!

Apparently we're dark horses!

It just gets our hopes up which is then crushed when we do an Scotland Ireland and run around like headless chickens and lose!

Fixed that for you.

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Post by tigertattie on Wed 11 Sep 2019, 12:28 pm

Nonsense Pete, we are far more headless chicken than you guys are.

Ireland only go into headless chicken mode when a team wont let you play your plan A, we go into headless chicken mode jsut because the wind is blowing in a different direction!

Our fans go mental that we dont have a plan B but I dont think we even have a plan A!!!
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Post by RDW on Wed 11 Sep 2019, 2:11 pm

Scotland and Ireland have definitely been shafted with the scheduling and it's no surprise to see Japan are going to have optimal preparation for these games.

Scotland in the space have 3 days have to travel over 200km to a new city, recover from a test match and prepare for the next one. It very much helps that we play Russia before so will be able to put our our reserve team but we'll still need to have props, back rows and centres backing up two tests in a short space of time.

Ireland have slightly longer to do the same with 5 days to work with, but that will be after a brutal game against Scotland where I'm assuming the same players will be backing it up with two games in 6 days.

And they say welfare is top of World Rugby's agenda!

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Post by BigGee on Wed 11 Sep 2019, 2:46 pm

To be fair, Scotland did quite well with their schedule when they played Japan in the last WC. I think we played them 5 days after they had played the boks!

What goes around comes around I guess and Japan after Russia is nothing like Scotland after SA.

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Post by Tramptastic on Wed 11 Sep 2019, 3:28 pm

Jamie Ritchie has been cleared to play in Japan. Magnus Bradbury to continue training with the squad in anticipation of the next (inevitable) injury.

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Post by tigertattie on Wed 11 Sep 2019, 3:32 pm

Its all money I suppose.

I'd have all group games being played over the weekend. You could argue for a couple of Friday night games to be included in that.

The issue would be that with 5 in each pool youd have a week where a team doesnt have a game. A week off is not a bad thing for teams but then you have arguements about some teams getting the week off before a potential Q/F or the poor team that get the first week off and then have back to back games. Again though I'd say that could be fixed by either increasing the pools to 6 teams or reducing them to 4.

International rugby is not like football where you can have a midweek game and then be ok to play on the Sunday!

Sure, playing at weekends would extend the tourny but that cant be a bad thing???

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Post by BigGee on Wed 11 Sep 2019, 4:34 pm

I thknk if all games were at the same intensity, that might be the case and you would havd to hxvd thdm all a minimum of 6 and ideally 7 days apart.

Thst is what makes a WC different i guess, mixkng up the teams a bit, always the chance of an upset (there have been a few over the years and a few close calls involving Scotland!).

The gsmes come thick snd fast znx it keeps everyone tuned in snd excited about things. If you had all the big games on at the same time, some of the smaller nations would get very little coverage, it is certainly better for them to spread them out evenly


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Post by RDW on Wed 11 Sep 2019, 4:35 pm

Have you got a new phone or lost your glasses recently Biggee? Your typing is all over the place just now! Laugh

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Post by thebandwagonsociety on Wed 11 Sep 2019, 4:46 pm

Is Samoa really not even in the conversation here? Those lads will be looking at this group and thinking they've lucked out altogether (no old school tri-nation team, no England, no France to deal with).

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Post by RDW on Wed 11 Sep 2019, 4:49 pm

Scotland fans know all too well not to underestimate Samoa after what happened in the last world cup! They haven't been great since then but you never know - we certainly can't take them lightly and I'm sure we'll be putting out our first choice team. We should have more than enough for them though - we just need to tighten up our defence against them. The last two game against them were far too high scoring.

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Post by rodders on Thu 12 Sep 2019, 10:01 am

thebandwagonsociety wrote:Is Samoa really not even in the conversation here? Those lads will be looking at this group and thinking they've lucked out altogether (no old school tri-nation team, no England, no France to deal with).

Yes they pushed Australia recently so they could definitely cause problems. I don't think this is a 2 horse race at all - Samoa and Japan will both be targeting a QF spot.
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Post by Old Man on Thu 12 Sep 2019, 10:35 am

rodders wrote:
thebandwagonsociety wrote:Is Samoa really not even in the conversation here? Those lads will be looking at this group and thinking they've lucked out altogether (no old school tri-nation team, no England, no France to deal with).

Yes they pushed Australia recently so they could definitely cause problems. I don't think this is a 2 horse race at all - Samoa and Japan will both be targeting a QF spot.

Not sure you could call it pushing Australia.

The match lost a bit of structure in the second half and Samoa caught up a bit, but then the half time score was 20 something 3 to OZ.

It was also not a full matchday RWC squad for OZ.

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Post by Tramptastic on Thu 12 Sep 2019, 10:44 am

It's actually a fairly horrific pool. Scotland could turnover Ireland but subsequently lose to both Japan and Samoa. Ireland could beat Scotland convincingly but lose to a very fast, highly skillful Japan. Samoa could wreck everybody but also lose to everybody.

Scotlands tournament will be decided on injuries to key players. Lose Watson, Nel and McInally we wont progress past a semi final. Lose Hogg and we definitely wont make it past a quarter. Lose Russell and we won't even make it out the pool stages.

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Post by rodders on Thu 12 Sep 2019, 11:21 am

The good thing from an Ireland perspective is if we get through those opening pool games then we can rotate against Russia and have a good break before the Samoa game. The Japan game 6 days after Scotland is the potential banana skin.

That said I would really doubt we would lose 2 games in the pool and from a QF perspective it is much a muchness to finish first or second from this pool.
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Post by Ninjarugby on Thu 12 Sep 2019, 1:33 pm

If SA turn over NZ next Saturday morning will it affect the thinking for the Ireland v Scotland game the next morning. Dangerous thinking too far ahead I know but would the teams in Group A rather play a SA team that have just beaten the AB's or the AB's themselves. Not discounting Italy of course as if Japan can beat SA in 2015 can Italy spring a surprise.

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Post by Collapse2005 on Thu 12 Sep 2019, 1:37 pm

Ninjarugby wrote:If SA turn over NZ next Saturday morning will it affect the thinking for the Ireland v Scotland game the next morning. Dangerous thinking too far ahead I know but would the teams in Group A rather play a SA team that have just beaten the AB's or the AB's themselves. Not discounting Italy of course as if Japan can beat SA in 2015 can Italy spring a surprise.

No I dont think it would, you could make an argument for the SA V NZ game affecting Scotland and Ireland's last pool game each but not the first one head to head. Remember you lose 2 games you are out, lose just 1 you could also get knocked out ala Japan at the last RWC.

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Post by SecretFly on Thu 12 Sep 2019, 1:41 pm

If you start plotting those kind of equations, fate will come and bite you hard on the arse.

I've always believed with WCs that if you're trying to avoid the best for as long as possible, you don't deserve to be there and are not really in contention for th big prize.  You have to be prepared to meet the best when you meet them, because the odds are you'll meet at least three of them to get to a final or to win a final anyway

If you honestly and sincerely think you might win a final, then I don't care which of SA or NZ we meet first. You're going to meet their kind anyway.

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Post by Tramptastic on Thu 12 Sep 2019, 1:49 pm

Nah I don't think it'll affect the thinking. The players won't be told to commit only "75% to the match" to lose it on purpose. That way lies injuries!

They'll try to win the pool no matter what, its too much of a risk to drop the 1st game when you have samoa and japan lurking in the pool for an ambush later on

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Japan 2019 - Pool A Empty Re: Japan 2019 - Pool A

Post by Old Man on Thu 12 Sep 2019, 1:53 pm

Imagine Joe Schmidt tells his players they need to lose a match because they want to avoid a specific opponent in the quarters.

That will seriously undermine their belief, confidence and momentum.

So I think it is a non issue for any team.

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Japan 2019 - Pool A Empty Re: Japan 2019 - Pool A

Post by RDW on Thu 12 Sep 2019, 1:56 pm

Yeah that is a complete non-issue - both teams will be going hell for leather regardless of what happens. It's not like SA is much of a step down/up from the ABs these days either!

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Japan 2019 - Pool A Empty Re: Japan 2019 - Pool A

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