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Teams accelerate Rugby World Cup 2019 preparations

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    Posted: 11-Oct-2018 at 8:37am
• Final Rugby World Cup 2019 spot to be decided at repechage tournament in Marseille as Canada, Germany, Hong Kong and Kenya battle for qualification to Japan 2019
• All 19 qualified unions are in action during the November window as Rugby World Cup preparations gather pace with less than a year to go
• World Rugby funding an exciting international programme for Rugby World Cup 2019 qualified unions, including preparation and technical support as part of targeted strategy to increase global growth and competitiveness 
• Rugby World Cup 2019 hosts Japan to face reigning champions New Zealand in Tokyo 
• Clash of top two nations in World Rugby rankings as Ireland take on All Blacks in Dublin
• A total of 45 international fixtures to be played between 27 October and 1 December

Rugby fans around the globe will be treated to a feast of top-class international rugby during the November window with all 19 nations qualified for Rugby World Cup 2019 in action, as preparations move up a gear on the road to Japan 2019.

The line-up for the ninth Rugby World Cup will be completed when the 20th and final place at Japan 2019 will go to the winners of the repechage tournament at Stade Delort in Marseille, France. The four-team round-robin tournament will see Canada, Germany, Hong Kong and Kenya battle it out over three matchdays on 11, 17 and 23 November to attain the ultimate prize of Rugby World Cup qualification.

Reflecting World Rugby’s commitment to ensuring that unions who have come through the qualification process for Rugby World Cup 2019 are in the best-possible form at Japan 2019, World Rugby is funding an exciting programme of international fixtures in line with union objectives.

The World Rugby funded programme includes a replica of the opening match of Rugby World Cup 2019 between Japan and Russia taking place at Kingsholm Stadium in Gloucester, England on 24 November.

Another duplication of a Rugby World Cup 2019 fixture sees Uruguay and Fiji come face-to-face, also in Gloucester, England on 17 November in what is a repeat of their Rugby World Cup 2015 encounter that saw Fiji run out 47-15 winners. The next time the two teams face each other will be on 25 September 2019 at the Kamaishi Recovery Memorial Stadium in Pool D of Rugby World Cup.

Elsewhere, Fiji will travel to face France and Scotland while fellow Pacific Island nations Tonga and Samoa will also contest three fixtures each, receiving significant funding from World Rugby to assist their assembly, preparation and travel costs. Other recently qualified Rugby World Cup unions Russia, Namibia and Uruguay all play at least two internationals during the November window. 

A mouth-watering schedule of international fixtures kicks off on 27 October as Rugby World Cup heavyweights New Zealand and Australia compete in the Bledisloe Cup at Yokohama Stadium in Japan, which will host the Rugby World Cup final just over a year later on 2 November 2019.

The action continues on 3 November when Rugby World Cup 2019 hosts Japan entertain reigning champions New Zealand at the same venue in Tokyo which will host the opening match of the Rugby World Cup just 323 days later.
Later in the month will see the highly anticipated clash of the top two nations in the current World Rugby rankings as second ranked Ireland take on world number one the All Blacks in Dublin on 17 November.


World Rugby Chair Bill Beaumont said: “With less than a year to go to Rugby World Cup 2019, we have reached the exciting moment where players, coaches and fans alike can start to countdown the days and feel the sense of anticipation build as rugby’s premier competition draws ever closer. 

“The November window presents a fantastic line up of fixtures, including clashes of the titans at the top of the World Rugby rankings and, importantly, a great depth of matches in which emerging nations will have the opportunity to test themselves against the more established nations in front of large, vibrant crowds. 

“We are confident that Japan 2019 will be the most competitive and compelling Rugby World Cup to date, thanks in large part to the level of high-intensity competition during November and specialist technical support that we are providing for the nations who have come through qualification.”


The action is not confined to the field of play as the World Rugby Awards will be celebrated in the spectacular surrounds of Monaco on 25 November when the men’s and women’s players of the year will be crowned.
A full schedule of women’s international fixtures, along with their respective match official appointments will be confirmed by World Rugby shortly.

With preparations for the first Rugby World Cup in Asia very much on track there has been unprecedented demand for tickets to Japan 2019. The general ticket application period, which runs until 12 November, is the first opportunity for general public to apply for tickets via

With such exceptional demand, fans are advised to check the traffic light availability status for individual matches and are also reminded that official supporter tour and hospitality packages can be purchased via and

Fans are urged to only buy Rugby World Cup 2019 match tickets, supporter tours, hospitality and merchandise from official sources and check out for further details.

Supporters around the globe interested in attending the November internationals should visit the respective venue or host nation union website for further information.
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