12:25 PM BST
23 mins – Japan 7-7 Argentina
Cinti drops a high kick to give Japan a scrum. A couple of Argentina players down injured, one of them is Petti.
TMO actually checking the actions of Labuschagne for any foul play on Gallo. It’s head-on-head and that’s going to be a yellow card for Japan. It will also be checked by the bunker.
12:24 PM BST
20 mins – Japan 7-7 Argentina
Japan building but then Labuschagne is penalised at a ruck on Argentina’s 22. Tight game so far, hard to call really.
12:21 PM BST
19 mins – Japan 7-7 Argentina
How do Argentina respond to that? Will try and a drop a video of the try in when one appears.
Argentina go through a few phases before knocking on in Japan’s half. Bit of kicking before Santi Carreras overhits one and it rolls dead for a Japan scrum deep in Argentina’s half.
12:18 PM BST
TRY FAKATAVA! Japan 7-7 Argentina
Reset scrum, looked a good shove from Argentina. Cinti’s clearance deflected as Japan try and counter, nice from Leitch to the lock Fakatava who goes for a chip and chase. Questionable, you would think, but it bounces back his way and the big man is over! Bounce came up perfectly for him and he beat Mallia to score.
Don’t tell forwards off for kicking, y’all
— Charlie Morgan (@CharlieFelix) October 8, 2023
12:14 PM BST
14 mins – Japan 0-7 Argentina
Steady scrum for Argentina before Cinti clears, but he doesn’t find touch. Japan’s passing a bit of a mess so far and they knock on again.
12:13 PM BST
12 mins – Japan 0-7 Argentina
First chance for Japan, Saito with a chip over his own head which comes off. Leitch clings on to a pass out wide but Japan are five metres out now. But knocked on at the base of the ruck by Saito! That’s a coach killer. Argentina scrum backed up near their line.
12:11 PM BST
10 mins – Japan 0-7 Argentina
Good scrum for Japan who then box kick. Handled by Argentina who respond with an up-and-under which Boffelli takes well. On the attack in Japan’s half, grubber from Santi Carreras and Lemeki knocks on. Argentina still going, Japan’s defence holding for now, good tackles on the gain line and then they get a penalty after Gomez Kodela comes in at the side.
12:08 PM BST
6 mins – Japan 0-7 Argentina
Scrum penalty Japan! Gallo on the angle penalised by O’Keeffe. Japan win the lineout, box kick, taken by Boffelli running it back well over halfway before Argentina knock on.
12:05 PM BST
4 mins – Japan 0-7 Argentina
Sun tricky when taking restarts as Argentina nearly botch the catch before clearing. Argentina back on the ball in midfield, starting with good intent here. Bomb from Carreras, Fifita can’t take it but it’s knocked on by Argentina, Japan call a scrum on their 22.
12:03 PM BST
TRY CHOCOBARES! Japan 0-7 Argentina
Nice start for Argentina’s maul, they move it wide and Chocobares cuts straight through to score! Easy as that. Just busts through a tackle off short pass and then steps Matsushima to score. Boffelli converts.
12:01 PM BST
Looks a cracking day in Nantes, New Zealand’s Ben O’Keeffe on the whistle. Carreras gets the game going, taken by Japan’s captain Himeno before Matsuda finds touch.
11:55 AM BST
Here come the teams
Argentina wearing that outstanding alternate strip. They missed the last quarter-finals, will it happen again?
11:48 AM BST
Welsh supporters with a keen eye on this
Who will they be facing next Saturday in Marseille? Already a slight advantage for Warren Gatland’s side having an extra day’s rest.
11:47 AM BST
Reminder of your teams
Japan: Lomano Lemeki; Kotaro Matsushima, Dylan Riley, Ryoto Nakamura, Siosaia Fifita; Rikiya Matsuda, Naoto Saito; Keita Inagaki, Shota Horie, Jiwon Gu; Jack Cornelsen, Amato Fakatava; Michael Leitch, Pieter Labuschagne, Kazuki Himeno (c)
Replacements: Atsushi Sakate, Craig Millar, Asaeli Ai Valu, Warner Dearns, Amanaki Saumaki, Yutaka Nagare, Ryohei Yamanaka, Jone Naikabula
Argentina: Juan Cruz Mallia; Emiliano Boffelli, Lucio Cinti, Santiago Chocobares, Mateo Carreras; Santiago Carreras, Gonzalo Bertranou; Thomas Gallo, Julian Montoya (c), Francisco Gómez Kodela; Guido Petti Pagadizabal, Tomas Lavanini; Pablo Matera, Marcos Kremer, Juan Martin Gonzalez
Replacements: Agustín Creevy, Joel Sclavi, Eduardo Bello, Matias Alemanno, Pedro Rubiolo, Lautaro Bazan Velez, Nicolás Sánchez, Matías Moroni
11:37 AM BST
Japan’s RWC form
9 – @JRFURugby have won nine of their 11 pool stage games at the #RWC since the beginning of 2015 (L2) after winning just one of their previous 24 such matches (D2 L21); however, they lost their only previous match against @lospumas in the tournament (33-12 in 1999). Blossoming.
— OptaJonny (@OptaJonny) October 8, 2023
11:19 AM BST
England were not great
Stating the obvious there, but Samoa should have won and would have without Danny Care’s cameo. Here’s Charlie Morgan on what England need to fix.
England’s entire approach is predicated on getting out of their own half and moving the ball upfield in a swift, straightforward manner. By that measure, the first half against Samoa was a horror show.
11:03 AM BST
Rugby World Cup free bets and betting offers
Having a punt? First take a look at these Rugby World Cup free bets and betting offers.
10:59 AM BST
Sea of green
Felt like that watching the coverage of Paris, didn’t it? James Lowe mentioned he’d heard 60,000 Ireland were coming to the French capital.
Here’s Oliver Brown on Ireland’s dominance, after their 17th consecutive Test win.
Ireland’s imperious class was the clearest statement yet of the chasm between the top four nations at this World Cup and the rest. If it were a sensibly-seeded tournament, Ireland, New Zealand, France and South Africa would be the only logical semi-finalists. It is a travesty that two of them have to be lost so soon, given how brutally they have put anybody outside their quartet to the sword. To relish this rich exhibition of Irish skill straight after England’s hapless horrors in Lille was to see a team demonstrating not so much a different style as a different sport.
10:45 AM BST
It’s the last day of pool stages! Obviously it didn’t go by in a flash but still, all of a sudden we’re looking at knockout rugby in a few days time.
Japan and Argentina would quite like to be involved in that if possible but only one of them will be in the quarter-finals next weekend in Marseille, with both sides before kick-off tied on nine points and currently separated by points difference.
Argentina have been underwhelming, to put it kindly. Their performance against England was dire and they were limited against Samoa as well, which has come as a bit of a shock. Win today and perhaps that doesn’t matter, although given how poor England have been, Pool D has comfortably been the worst pool out of the four.
Still, there’s too much talent in this Argentina side to keep producing dud performances. Michael Cheika has made 11 changes to the side who defeated Chile, with prop Francisco Gómez Kodela back for the first time since facing England.
Here’s captain Julian Montoya on what they’re expecting from Japan.
It is a defining match. We already analysed them and they are a very disciplined team, with good set-pieces and a very accurate kicker. But we have to focus on ourselves, on how we are going to impose our game, our physicality, our game plan, when scoring points.
Perhaps this is the day where we see the best of Argentina’s backs, which will all hinge on ruck speed and clearouts from the likes of Marcos Kremer and Guido Petti.
Japan made the quarter-finals in 2019 and would love to get back to that stage, and in fact it would be something of a small achievement to even reach the last eight given their bad form over the past few years. They threatened at times against England and had their moments against Samoa too.
Siosaia Fifita replacing Jone Naikabula on the left wing is their only change from the win over Samoa, and their biggest threat in Kotaro Matsushima is well overdue a first try at the tournament. Maybe this is the day.
Here’s their assistant coach (and future England Women’s head coach after this tournament), John Mitchell.
We had a good base from [Rugby World Cup] 2019, and what’s been good about this tournament is that we have a lot of players who experienced 2015 and 2019, which are a strength of ours. We have players who know how to deal with and prepare for pressure. Also, we have young energetic and talented players who are experiencing tough games.
I’m also confident about our scrums and lineouts since they have been improving a lot. If the scrums and lineouts are good, we have the confidence that we can attack and win against any team, so this weekend will be a really good test for us.
Right, plenty of build-up on the way while looking back on Ireland’s excellent performance against Scotland, and England’s very much not excellent performance against Samoa.
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