Japan's scary weather has claimed its first World Cup victim, with the Wallabies forced to delay their departure for Tokyo.

The All Blacks are set to depart for Japan this morning, arriving in Narita Airport later today with some flights landing at Tokyo's main airport already cancelled today.

All flights into Tokyo's Haneda Airport have been cancelled.

The Rugby World Cup is facing the prospect of washed out games which would result in pool games - such as the one between the All Blacks and Namibia - being declared a draw.


While it seems unlikely, the arrival of the potential life-threatening Typhoon Faxai in Tokyo is a reminder that the weather could play a massive part in the tournament outcome.

The 2019 World Cup is being played during Japan's typhoon season, with September a particularly unstable month.

The All Blacks play pool games against South Africa and Namibia in stadiums without roofs.

Rugby.com.au reported more teams are expected to be affected, with cancelled inbound flights and trains. The Japanese Meteorological Society has warned the storm could affect other sides due to travel on Sunday, which includes England.

There are no reserve days for washed out games, which will be declared 0–0 draws if they are abandoned prior to kick-off or during the first half. From halftime on, the score would stand in an abandoned game.

Michael Cheika and the Wallabies have been hit by Japan's scary weather problem. Photo / Photosport
Michael Cheika and the Wallabies have been hit by Japan's scary weather problem. Photo / Photosport

Playoff matches can be re-scheduled, but as in the pool games the score will count from the halftime point. If scores are level at halftime, there are tiebreaker clauses such as tries scored.

The typhoon season brings massive rains and huge winds. Japan meteorologists say Faxai will include "historic" winds up to 216kph, and up to 300mm of rain in 24 hours.

Japan can be hit by about 30 of these weather situations each year although they do not always reach the mainland. The biggest storm for a quarter of a century hit RWC venues Kobe and Osaka a year ago.


The Wallabies had planned a week-long camp in Odawara before playing Fiji in their opening pool game at the impressive Sapporo Dome.

Accu.weather reported: "The tropical cyclone strengthened from a severe tropical storm into a typhoon early Saturday morning with winds equivalent to a Category 1 hurricane in the Atlantic or Eastern Pacific basins.

"Especially near the coast of Honshu, including Tokyo, residents should be making final preparations ahead of the storm. The rain and wind will be a threat to life and property, even though it will impact a relatively small area."