Postponement announcement of 2020 June/July Test Match Series against Wales and England

Friday, May 15, 2020

The Japan Rugby Football Union (President, Shigetaka Mori, Minato-ku in Tokyo) has announced that the Japan’s international tests scheduled to be held in Japan in June and July have been postponed.

Giving the situation where the spread of the COVID-19 and, after a series of discussion with World Rugby, the Welsh Rugby Union and the Rugby Football Union, the postponement of the following three test matches has been decided because of continued difficulties in securing adequate preparation and safe operation.

– Japan v Wales at Shizuoka Stadium ECOPA on Saturday, June 27th, 2020

– Japan v England at Showa Denko Dome Oita on Saturday July 4th, 2020

– Japan v England at Noevir Stadium Kobe on Saturday, July 11th, 2020

All parties, including member unions, international competitions, professional club competitions and International Rugby Players are continuing to evaluate the potential contingency options for the July matches to be rescheduled as part of a viable and aligned calendar for the remainder of the year.

All decision-making will be entirely contingent on national government travel, quarantine and health advice and important player welfare and hosting considerations in line with return-to-rugby guidance recently published by World Rugby.

◎Japan Rugby Football Union President, Shigetaka Mori, said;

“First of all, I would like to extend our sincere appreciation for the continued warm support to the Japan Rugby National Team. It is disappointed to us that the scheduled tests matches against Wales and England in June and July have been postponed, while many fans are looking forward to this year’s Japan’s campaign. However, above all, we believe that it is the time of period when everyone concerned works together to prevent further spread of COVID-19 and meet the current social needs. Once the situation is under controlled, we would like to welcome everyone with a smile at the stadium with thorough preparation in a safe environment. While we hope for the situation will soon go back to normal, please keep you well and safe.”

◎Jamie Joseph, the Head Coach of the Brave Blossom, said;

It is disappointing that we are not able to start this year’s Japan national team campaign and get our players exposure to the scheduled important international test experience against Wales and England this summer. But given the global COVID-19 spread, I believe that we have no other option and it is time for all of us to stay at home and to be with your families.

The Players have been given programs to keep them in the best condition possible but more importantly is that they stay safe and well with their families in a very difficult time.

I hope everyone is keeping safe and healthy, especially for our great fans who always support Japan rugby, and am looking forward to the next opportunity to see you in near future. Let’s get through this difficult time together as one team.

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