Wallabies to return to scene of World Cup exit for Japan Test
Tokyo (AFP) –
Australia will play a Test in Japan next month ahead of both countries' European tours, it was announced Friday, with the Wallabies returning to the scene of their 2019 Rugby World Cup exit.
Australia will take on Japan on October 23 in Oita, where they lost to England in the World Cup quarter-final two years ago.
The Wallabies will then travel on to Britain for Tests against Scotland, England and Wales in November.
The Wallabies last played Japan in Yokohama in November 2017, when they beat the hosts 63-30.
Australia coach Dave Rennie said his Japan counterpart Jamie Joseph had built a "formidable" squad that "plays a really exciting, up-tempo style".
"We need to continue to test ourselves with this variety of play, so this is an important match for us as we continue to build ahead of the next World Cup in France," Rennie said.
The game will be Japan's first home Test since hosting the World Cup, where they famously beat Ireland and Scotland before exiting at the quarter-final stage to eventual champions South Africa.
They lost to the British and Irish Lions and Ireland on tour earlier this year and will return to Europe after facing Australia for Tests against Ireland, Portugal and Scotland.
"As a team, we're very much aware of the significance of this match, being almost two years to the day that Japan last played international rugby at home, in our Rugby World Cup quarter-final," Joseph said.
"The opportunity to play a Test match on home soil, against a team the quality of Australia, is a hugely important moment for us to reconnect with our fans and the wider Japanese public, following the success of the 2019 World Cup."
© 2021 AFP