Japan trumps Samoa again to stay in Rugby World Cup quarterfinals hunt

TOULOUSE, France (AP) — Japan teamwork has trumped Samoa individual power and won their Rugby World Cup match by a surprisingly comfortable 28-22 in Toulouse. With Argentina expected to earn a bonus-point win against Chile on Saturday, Japan’s last Pool D match with the Pumas next week will be a winner-takes-all fight for a quarterfinal spot. Samoa’s bid for a first quarterfinal since 1995 has been terminated, and its second straight defeat has advanced idle pool leader England to the quarterfinals. The Japanese reached the quarters for the first time at their home World Cup in 2019 but their form and results this year suggested they were way off the pace to challenge again. But they were patient and smart and disciplined at Stadium de Toulouse, and Samoa was not.

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