It seems the flower
of Scotland has grabbed second
place in Pool B and …
… thus grabbed a spot in the quarterfinals. Sorry Japan. Well, even though they still have a match to play tomorrow evening, which they will win I think, it looks like the Brave Blossoms will not be advancing to the next stage of the World Cup. If Samoa had won today, they would be but Scotland won and it was a real narrow win, quite nail biting actually. Scotland are going to be playing Australia in the quarter finals. I’m happy in one sense that Scotland got through, being a good neighbour (I haven’t been to Scotland yet amazingly but I’d like to), but it would have been great to see Japan go through for the first time ever to a quarter-final stage. Still, I’m sure they’ll bow out in style tomorrow evening. The US will be keen to leave the world cup with at least one win so they’ll be alert but I still think Japan will beat them. Not 64-0 as South Africa did, probably a much smaller score and maybe a narrow win as well.
So we’re playing Les Bleus tomorrow and I’m looking forward to that immensely. Such a big build up to it so I hope it doesn’t end up being a dull match for all that.
Happy to hear Georgia have got their 3rd place spot and thus automatic qualification to the next world cup.
Up to last night’s match between New Zealand and Tonga, I had not seen two teams perform a war dance in front of each other. I think Tonga’s appeared more ‘fearsome’. I’m not being sarcastic. It’s nice to watch but the other teams just eyeball them and smile at the end (if they do anything). Pool C is the only pool in this particular world cup with more than one team with a war dance ritual. But I had not seen it before or don’t remember it at least from previous world cups, the only occasion I’m likely to watch these nations play rugby against each other.
In related news, rugby 7s is going to be introduced into the next Olympics, in Rio and only next year (it does not seem that long since London put on such a good show), and, more common to Japan, baseball is being considered for Tokyo 2020. I think baseball (野球) might have been introduced to Japan around the same time as rugby, i.e. in the last, say, 30 years of the 19th century, given the foreign influence of that time (as I went into in a previous rugby-related post), but even so baseball is clearly huge in Japan which, if you’ve ever been there, you’ll know. Rugby is obviously catching on but it is still not as big as baseball (and possibly football or サッカー where Japan also field good teams in international tournaments, both for the men and women). I think introducing Rugby 7s and baseball is a great idea but how many countries really play baseball in a big way? The USA, Japan and Cuba are only three I know of. Maybe more countries will take it up knowing it’s going to be in the Olympics. China are probably already on it haha. Anyway, two more enjoyable sports to add to the mix. I’d prefer those two than golf, another introduction I think for next year or possible introduction for later, any day of the week. ZZZZZZZ. Yes, I know I don’t have to watch it but really….