Typhoon claims another match
BREAKING NEWS: World Cup organisers announced the cancellation of the match between Namibia and Canada due to Typhoon Hagibis.
However, they were “optimistic” the others could go ahead.
“We were left with no option but to cancel the match on safety grounds,” said tournament director Alan Gilpin, who had already been forced to cancel two other matches as Hagibis approached.
However, Gilpin added: “We remain optimistic that Sunday’s remaining matches will go ahead as scheduled in Kumamoto, Hanazono and Yokohama, which are much further south and therefore outside of the impact of the storm conditions this morning.”
Cancellation is a blow for the northern town of Kamaishi, whose hosting of World Cup games was a potent symbol of recovery from a 2011 tsunami disaster when it was nearly wiped off the map.
It also robs Namibia of a chance to grab their first World Cup win and end their record run of 22 games at the tournament without a victory. Canada is without a win in their last 10 World Cup matches.
The cancellation means that only one game was held at the Kamaishi Recovery Memorial Stadium – Uruguay’s stunning, 30-27 upset of Fiji in Pool D.
The stadium, the only purpose-built venue at the World Cup, was built on the site of a school which was the scene for the “Miracle of Kamaishi”, when more than 400 children sprinted into the mountains to safety.
“Our hearts go out to the teams and also their fans, but also the people of Kamaishi, who have been incredible during what has been a special journey in recent years,” said Gilpin.
“Nobody will be more disappointed than them, but also nobody would have better empathy with the decision.”
All eyes are now on whether the do-or-die match between hosts Japan and Scotland in Yokohama will go ahead.