Japan had high expectations of two wins in New Zealand but it was not to be. Although the Blossoms played some very exciting and fast paced rugby they could not hold out against the power of Tonga and of course France and New Zealand. With the draw against Canada and Canada having beaten Tonga it meant that Japan finished at the bottom of their pool and yet again will have to follow the qualification route to be in England in 2015. The nation continues to progress but unfortunatly so do the opposition, though they should be strong enough to win through as Asia 1 yet again next time.
Japan are regulars at Rugby World Cups. Ever present since the first in 1987, they have so far recorded only one match win, that coming in 1991, though they did manage a draw against Canada in 2007 12-12 and now again this time 23-23.
You'd think that rugby wouldn't be an ideal sport for the generally diminutive race, but as you were probably told many times as a child "the bigger they are, the harder they fall" and Japan love putting that to the test.
Relying still on some imports, especially to fill back row positions and the 10 slot, Japan is now bringing some exciting new blood through,with the bulk of the home grown squad having 15 caps or less.
Ranked 13th in the world, Japan had to qualify for the Rugby World Cup 2011 and did so with ease, they had a 100% record in the Asian 5 Nations the new qualifying group, scoring heavily in all their games.
Japan's Rugby World Cup shirt for the 2011 Rugby World Cup as we expected has held true to the red and white colours normally associated with them, though the styling does include some subtly changes again. The Japan Home Rugby Shirt is made by Canterbury but does not have the high level of sophistication applied to the top tier nations. To place your order and view other Japanese shirts visit the Japan RWC Shirts page.
With their solitary rugby world cup win in six tournaments, the Japanese are under no illusions when it comes to their chances in New Zealand 2011. As they line up in pool A against Canada, France, hosts New Zealand and Tonga. Where they will do very well to win any games, their best chance probably being Canada.