Here’s What Japan’s Bonus-Point Win Over Samoa Means For Ireland & Scotland In Pool A

Last-gasp.

Japan are still in control of Pool A after securing a bonus-point win over Samoa this afternoon to leave them with a 100% record at the World Cup so far.

The Brave Blossoms are now on 14 points after three games played with Ireland behind them on 11. Scotland meanwhile are on just five points but with a game in hand against Russia to come before they meet the hosts in the final round of the pool stages.

So what now? Well first up Scotland need to make sure they get a bonus-point win against Russia, otherwise, their World Cup will likely be over. Maximum points in that game would leave them on 10 points heading into their clash with Japan, four points behind the hosts.

That means if Scotland beat Japan but the hosts come away with a losing bonus-point, Scotland are out. Gregor Townsend’s men will have to close that four-point gap and if they do that they will go through on head-to-head. So they need to either score four tries and win by any margin or just win and deny Japan the losing BP.

There’s also the mad scenario where Japan could score four tries and lose by less than seven, giving them two bonus-points and putting them through.

As for Ireland that last-minute bonus-point from Japan puts all the pressure on them ahead of their final pool game with Samoa. If they don’t get maximum points in that game, Japan only need a losing bonus-point to stay top, once again because of head-to-head.

Pool A standings

1. Japan – 14
2. Ireland – 11
3. Scotland – 5
4. Samoa – 5
5. Russia – 0