Rugby World Cup Group C, England against France on Saturday 12th October 2019 has been called off due to Typhooon Hagidis threat. In eight Rugby world cup, over 32 years, no rugby match has ever had to be cancelled until now. In august 2019, just before the tournament started, Typhoon Faxai left three people dead in what was the most powerful storm to hit Japan in 60 years, with highest winds recorded at 215km/h causing $443 million of damage and destroying nearly 1,000,000 households.
Hagibis is being measured at 1,400km wide, considerably larger than Faxai that was 400km, and of higher intensity after going through “among the most explosive rapid intensifications of any tropical cyclone on record anywhere on Earth”, though it is hoped that it will weaken as it gets close to lands.
The typhoon, described as the biggest of the year, is set to wreak havoc in Tokyo and surrounding areas.
The decision to cancel matches has not been taken lightly,” said tournament director Alan Gilpin.
“It has been made with the best interest of team, public, and tournament volunteer safety as a priority based on expert advice.”
The Pool B match between New Zealand and Italy in Toyota on Saturday has also been cancelled, denying Italy their outside chance of qualifying.
Official World Cup Announcement?
- Called OFF: England v France and New Zealand v Italy (Saturday 12th October 2019).
- ON: Ireland v Samoa (11:45 BST, Sat) and Australia v Georgia (Fri) both set to go ahead.
- ON AS IT STANDS: All four Sunday games – including Scotland v Japan (11:45 BST) – but a review will be made on Sunday morning depending on the damage caused by the typhoon.
“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.”
The cancelled matches will be treated as a 0-0 draws and each team awarded two points. New Zealand top the group ahead of South Africa, while both England and France have qualified for the quarter-finals with a game to spare.