Japan pull out of eight-team tournament - Reports

Japan have not played since the home World Cup last year
Japan have not played since the home World Cup last year

Japan have pulled out of the proposed eight-team tournament scheduled in the United Kingdom later this year following coronavirus restrictions.

Japan along with Fiji were set to join the Six Nations teams for the end of the year series as the traditional autumn series were cancelled following the travel restrictions and other factors created by the outbreak of Covid-19 with New Zealand, Australia along with South Africa and Argentina will be playing their Rugby Championship tournament in November and December.

However, according to a report in Japan’s Kyodonews.net, the preparations for the tournament has been hampered by the restrictions in the country which refrains coaching staff from joining the squad members for a preparatory camp.

“Complications caused by the coronavirus pandemic prompted the JRFU to opt out of the European competition, which is planned to run from November to December,” read the source in the report.

“With Japan heavily restricting the entry of foreign passport holders amid the pandemic, members of the Brave Blossoms coaching staff have been kept out of the country, making it difficult to hold a domestic camp in preparation for the tournament.”

Japan last played during their home World Cup campaign last year where they managed to reach the quarter-finals.