Rugby World Cup 2015: Samoa v Japan

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Pool B

Samoa v Japan

Saturday, 3 October 23:30



Japan couldn’t back up their incredible win over South Africa as they wilted in the second-half against Scotland, but with 10 days rest as opposed to four between their opening two matches they will expect to perform for the full 80 minutes here. In a bruising encounter, Samoa started well against the Boks but a lack of discipline and fatigue meant they were blown away after the break. As a result both sides are one win from two so in essence the victor will keep their qualification dreams alive whilst effectively ending that of their opponents.

Both sides will be familiar with each another as this is the 10th meeting in nine years. Samoa dominated the earlier fixtures winning four consecutively but since 2010 the two sides have been evenly matched with Japan prevailing on two of the last five occasions including a 19 point triumph in their most recent encounter. It could’ve easily been four from five for the Brave Blossoms as two of the defeats were by just one and three points.

It’s not just Japan who have closed the gap on the Pacific Island nation. Since 2011, Samoa have lost two of their eight encounters against minnows with only one victory by more than 10 points.

Japan’s improvements against Samoa have coincided with their form in general. They’ve won 19/27 leading up to this tournament and were rewarded with that incredible victory over South Africa.

Taking everything into account all signs point towards a close affair and given the amount of time Eddie Jones had had to prepare his side we think they look great value for the win.


Key Stats

  • Samoa have won six of their last eight against minnows
  • Samoa have a W7-L2 record against Japan.
  • Japan have won 20 of their last 29 matches

Recommendation: Japan Win 4.00