And so in Japan in Japan and the Wallabies should be afraid.
Not because Japan are exceptionally good at test rugby matches – indeed, they are quite close to tenth in the World Rugby rankings ahead of Fiji, Georgia, Italy and Samoa.
And not because of their name, which is the Brave Blossoms, which sounds like they’re trying to convince themselves. Not exactly Blood-Gargling Gorilla Squadron in terms of creepy nicknames.
Indeed, consider two scenarios:
– Who do we have this week?
– Gargles. A way.
– Oh, shit no!
– Who do we have this week?
– Oh that’s nice.
So no – Japan, a country of crackers full of friendly, courteous, and extremely law-abiding citizens, is not a particularly frightening proposition for a Tier one test rugby nation like ours.
Or at least they shouldn’t.
And yet they do.
And the Wallabies should be afraid. And they should be afraid because of a four syllable word.
Ex. Péc. Tay. To avoid.
Saturday’s test match at Showa Denko Dome in Ōita in Ōita Prefecture on Kyushu Island, southern Japan, at 3:45 p.m. warriors in golden hues.
The Wallabies beat France, they beat Argentina, they beat world champion Springboks from South Africa. They lost three to zero to the All Blacks, but, you know, it kind of happens.
Australia is also on the crest of a small wave and number three on the top of the World Rugby pops with a ball.
And so, they kick off a truly anticipated UK tour with a test match in Japan against the Brave Blossoms, whose form line – LLLLW – doesn’t matter.
Because Japan grows many legs at home. And Wallabies are just humans. And humans have empathy. And as sympathetic and empathetic people, the Wallabies might get rocked by taking the Brave Blossoms lightly. And forget to stop and smell the roses.
There, it does not really work.
Anyway, I think you know what I mean. Just that Japan is ranked number ten in the world of rugby test match nations and Australia is ranked number three and tourists should wipe the floor with Japan.
And the catch is, if wallabies think that for a single minute while lounging in the steam baths of Oita Prefecture, known to be home to Japanese macaques, those snow monkeys you see in the steam, they could be scorching and anxious. -I did 80 minutes of rugby at Showa Denko Dome, and no arguing.
Want some motivation? Need a few? Japan beat Ireland (19-12), Scotland (28-21), Russia (30-10) and Samoa (38-19) and dominated their pool in the Rugby World Cup 2019. This, as you may remember, was in Japan.
They thus reached the quarter-finals of the Rugby World Cup before losing 26-3 against the future champions of South Africa (whom they beat in the 2015 version and Ben Darwin said he had climbed to 66-1 and I wish I had too).
Japan is also playing for more than a rare gash in the belt of a traditional nation of rugby power. Japan makes the show against the Wallabies, they are in contention for the Rugby Championship. They knock on the door.
The world of sports in these frustrated modern times is a fluid and agile arena. Japan has so many handfuls of yen and would make as much sense as Argentina in the rugby championship, and in a very tidy time zone.
And I have never been to Japan and would love to go golfing and swimming with the monkeys in the steam baths in Oita.
Want more? Need more? Brave Blossoms Lock Jack Cornelsen is the son of Greg Cornelsen, who will one day be forever embalmed in the carbonite that froze Han Solo and hung from the roof of the North Brisbane Rugby Club in Wooloowin because he scored four tries of the number eight in a test match against the All Blacks at Eden Park in 1978.
I don’t know if this will mainly motivate the Wallabies but it’s one thing, you will agree. And one day, and we should not fear the future, but all rugby test match nations could be made up of professional expatriates who have spent enough time in a country to be citizens of it. So it goes; so it’s always gone …
In any event! It is not for me to motivate these people. You don’t shoot that cool golden guernsey that would look really good with three Adidas stripes on long arms without playing your absolute bullshit. And the Wallabies will play their bullshit. And Japan too. And it should be good enough.
And after all that, I love Wallabies 30 and over.
Because they have a lot of better players. The fastest that will burn the earth at the top of a daytime track.
And they’ll have the voice of campus great man Dave Rennie ringing in their ears about the dangers, if not the many evils, of waiting. And they will certainly be afraid of him.