There are no excuses for the incompetence and impotence of World Rugby officials in Japan this week.
The games between Italy and the All Blacks, and France and England, should have been moved forward a day, or moved to a new venue.
It is, according to five travel advisory websites I've looked at, highly unusual for a major typhoon to strike this late in the year, but it's not unheard of, and the lack of nimble, lateral thinking from the people at World Rugby is a sad reflection on the state of the game. They could have changed things, but it would have taken daring and crazily hard work. Neither are attributes that spring to mind when you think of the masters of the world game.
Natural disasters are, sadly, a part of life, which will always matter, as they should, infinitely more than rugby games.
But they're not a good enough reason to meekly surrender because a schedule of games was decided on three years ago.
When the Christchurch earthquake struck in February, 2011, the tragedy gave pause as to whether it would be appropriate, just six months later, to start a World Cup in New Zealand.
Christchurch was due to host five pool games, involving, amongst others, England and Australia, and two quarter-finals. In March, 2011, it was announced that all the games would be moved elsewhere.
At the time a Canterbury legend, Robbie Deans, then coaching the Wallabies, said that "while today's news is disappointing for Christchurch, having been in the city earlier in the week and being able to assess the damage for myself, the decision is understandable.
"As important as the hosting of the World Cup is to the people of New Zealand, the people of Christchurch have more important issues to deal with as they endeavour to rebuild their city and their lives after the recent tragedy."
Eventually the chief executive of the Cup, Martin Snedden, says he came to believe that, "in some way the World Cup event could be of help to Christchurch, as long as we found an appropriate and respectful way to achieve it."
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In comparison to the loss of life in Christchurch, losing the Cup matches was a small, if still sad, blow. But the decision was made not just because the ground once known as Lancaster Park was unrepairable, but because so much accommodation in the central city was destroyed.
The circumstances are different in Japan. Swift action on timing and venues could have kept the playing field level for the likes of Italy. Instead this will be a Cup forever compromised.
Our only undefeated All Black coach, Sir Fred Allen, and Steve Hansen never met each other before Allen died in 2012, at the age of 92.
That's a pity. They would have enjoyed each other's company, and not just because in our rugby history they stand, on their results, as the two most outstanding coaches the game here has ever seen. Straight shooting came first with both of them, and Allen would have loved Hansen's laconic humour.
Allen shook up the way the All Blacks played the game, insisting on the ball being run, and not just reserved for forwards to win it, so inside backs could kick it. Among others in his All Black teams, Colin Meads was initially dubious. "We were used to bash and wallop and get on top up front. But Fred got that backline ticking over, and so (as a forward) you didn't mind giving them the ball to have a go."
Allen would have loved the TJ Perenara try against Naimibia, or the experiment with Beauden Barrett and Richie Mo'unga at 10 and 15.
As a selector, like Hansen, Allen had too many strokes of genius for them to be flukes. Against all the perceived wisdom of the time he selected Fergie McCormick ahead of Mick Williment for the 1967 tour of Britain and France, and McCormick returned one of the stars of the team. He was daring too, prepared to pick Grahame Thorne for the All Blacks before he'd even played for Auckland.
Hansen has no academic qualifications. He's called himself a graduate of the university of life, and he has highly elevated levels of emotional intelligence, with a huge ability to read people, and then get the best out of them.
"Working," he's said, "gives you experience and exposure to other things, which makes you a better person." As he told an English journalist in 2015 he believes you have to "be true to your real self. Don't get caught up in something you're not. Be true to your own values and the things that are important to you. Understand too that you're going to make mistakes, and that's okay. The important thing to remember when you make mistakes, is to learn from them."
In the last two decades of Fred Allen's life, when I had the wonderful good fortune to get to know him well, he'd talk in ways that almost echo Hansen's thoughts about how life experiences had shaped him as a man and leader, and given him a real sense of who he was, and what worked for him.
Allen was a teenager during the grim years of the Great Depression, and was wounded twice in World War II, serving first in the Middle East with the New Zealand 27th Battalion. Later, in Italy, where the battalion captured the town of Villa Fontana, he missed death by a split second. He asked a tank commander to throw him his haversack, which was on top of the tank. Allen missed the catch, and as he bent down to pick up his pack, a German 88mm shell blasted just over his head, instantly killing the commander, whose body fell on top of Allen.
"I'm no academic," said Allen, "but in the war I'd had a bit of experience about how to manage men. The experience I had as a soldier certainly helped me to judge them. When I became a coach I think I brought some of that Army attitude with me. In my time I was strict on discipline, and the players' self discipline. It'll never prove to be wrong."
Hansen has, quite rightly, become known for adjusting how he treats individual players. Some need a verbal kick in the butt, he's said, while others need a cuddle.
Allen was generally more a kick in the butt man, but not always. An amazingly gifted flanker of the 1960s, Waka Nathan was verbally abused before almost every game when Allen was coaching him in a record setting Auckland Ranfurly Shield side.
Until Nathan was himself a coach, shaping a great New Zealand Māori side in the 1970s, he couldn't understand why he was tongue lashed before a match while his great friend, dating back to their days together at Otahuhu College, Mac Herewini was not. "Fred would rip me to shreds, and then turn to Mackie, who was always sitting beside in the shed, and say, 'There's nothing I can say to you Mackie, you're a genius.'"
Nathan, one of the sunniest natured men to ever wear a rugby jersey, would then come steaming out of the shed, Rambo in studs, ready to strike down with terrible force anyone unlucky enough to be playing against him. Herewini, so highly strung before a game there would sometimes be tears in the changing room, would coolly run the show.
The American philosopher Henry Thoreau once wrote that "None are so old as those who have outlived enthusiasm."
Until his death there was no danger of that with Allen. He wasn't a man who dwelt in the past. He never lamented that things were not as good as they were in his day as a player and coach. He was almost starry eyed, as an example, about the gifts Dan Carter brought to the game.
I've always seen the same attitude in Hansen, which is why, despite the laconic way he addresses the media, and by extension the public, we should write off as nonsense suggestions over the last couple of years that Hansen and the All Blacks have lost their enthusiasm, and therefore their winning edge.
I thought of Allen too when Dane Coles said that Hansen has delivered a "pretty old school" blistering halftime talk after the muddling first half with Namibia.
They called Allen "The Needle", and it wasn't because he was a dab hand at sewing. In full, angry, verbal flight he would have made Lady Chatterley's lover blanch. In one All Black team talk in the 1960s, Meads was so nervous he yawned with anxiety. Allen's tone chilled the room. "Am I boring you Colin?" The memory lingered with Meads for a lifetime.
Personalities as strong as Allen and Hansen are not always received well by people in boardrooms. Where their stories thankfully diverge is that Allen's coaching career ended bitterly.
At the end of 1968, having coached the All Blacks through 37 games, including 14 tests, without a loss, Allen felt he had to resign. Despite his stunning success he had fallen deeply out of favour with the Wellington based cabal that then dominated the NZRU. He'd defied them when they tried to interfere with team selection. He'd outraged them when he allowed journalist Alex Veysey to sit in on a team meeting. We'd known each other for years before I asked Allen why he resigned, but when I did he was searingly honest. "I quit so the bastards wouldn't have the satisfaction of sacking me."
Thankfully Hansen has coached in an era when officials are more at ease with someone who breaks moulds. The rewards for both Hansen, the All Blacks, and the game itself, have been huge.