Japanese officials issued a level 5 evacuation order for Kamaishi and the surrounding area due to Typhoon Hagibis. Kamaishi is a mountainous area and Hagibis has caused plenty of flooding and landslides throughout the area.
As a result of the evacuation order, Canada’s final pool stage match vs Namibia has been canceled. This is the 3rd canceled match at the Rugby World Cup following England vs France and New Zealand vs Italy
This is the correct call from World Rugby. The safety of the two teams, their staff, the workers, volunteers, fans, and everyone else in Kamaishi and the rest of Japan is significantly more important than the result of a rugby match.
The cancellation of the match is understandable, however, both teams will still be disappointed that they couldn’t play. Both sides would have been targeting this game as their best opportunity to earn a win at the Rugby World Cup. For Namibia, it was a chance to earn their first-ever victory at the Rugby World Cup. For Canada, it would be a chance to end 2019 on a high note.
Additionally, DTH van der Merwe loses his final chance to become one of the few players to score a try in four Rugby World Cups.
Canada was able to turn the disappointment of not playing against Namibia into a positive one. The Canadian team and staff decided to lend a hand to the relief effort following Typhoon Hagibis. Their actions are truly what the spirit of rugby is about. We can all be proud of the way this team represented Canada and Canadian values today and throughout the tournament.