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Date TimeSeptember 20, 2019
VoiceJapan 30-10 Russia• Matsushima hat-trick seals victory after shaky startThe first Rugby World Cup to be staged in Asia is under way and the host nation have duly delivered the result the tournament organisers needed. First impressions are considered important in Japanese culture and, while their overall performance was not exactly a technicolour dream for their coach, Jamie Joseph, the Brave Blossoms’ bonus-point victory will have concentrated a few minds among their fellow Pool A occupants Ireland and Scotland.
Japan open Rugby World Cup by overcoming dogged Russia
There is still a fair way to go before Joseph realises his goal of steering Japan into the World Cup knockout stages for the first time but there were enough positives to enthuse a stadium almost entirely populated with excited red-and-white clad supporters. Right wing Kotaro Matsushima claimed three of his side’s four tries to earn himself the honour of scoring the first hat-trick by any Japanese player at a World Cup.

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