RWC 2021 Asia Qualification Pathway – Japan Gains Automatic Qualification
World Rugby has dropped a dramatic change to the RWC 2021 Asia Qualification Pathway and confirmed that Japan has automatically qualified for Rugby World Cup 2021 as the highest-ranked team in the region.
This means that Kazakhstan and Hong Kong will now compete in play-off matches to determine the RWC 2021 Asia Qualification and which team will progress to the Final Qualification Tournament.
Initially, all three teams were due to play in a three-way round-robin Asia Rugby Championship to determine the qualification for RWC 2021. World Rugby said the change was due to the “ongoing travel and quarantine challenges as a result of the global COVID-19 pandemic.”
Japan will now automatically qualify RWC Pool B and join the USA, Canada and Italy.
The governing body said, “The decision, which provides important certainty to the teams, is supported by all unions and enables teams to plan and optimise their high-performance programmes ahead of the pinnacle event in New Zealand next year.”
World Rugby added that they will continue to work with Hong Kong and Kazakhstan and details of the play-off will be announced at a later date.
Who can buy tickets for RWC 2021?
World Rugby confirmed that a limited release of the Mastercard RWC 2021 Tournament Pass for Rugby World Cup 2021, will go on sale on 8 October 2021. The next ticket sale commences 1 November 2021, 9:00 am NZST.
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