Rugby World Cup: Japan skipper Michael Leitch promises side’s best-ever World Cup

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Captain Michael Leitch says Japan are all set as they ready to take on Russia in Friday’s Rugby World Cup opener to inspire the host country.
Japan conquer South Africa, Samoa and the United States in the 2015 championship , narrowly missing out over the last eight.
„We’ve got the chance to inspire Japan again. We have trained well, prepared well and this will be Japan’s best World Cup ,“ said Leitch, 30.
Wing Kenki Fukuoka and back row Amanaki Mafi will overlook the match for Japan.
Both picked up injuries from the heavy defeat South Africa earlier this month, together with Fukuoka, scorer of all 21 tries in 34 Tests, struggling with a calf injury and Mafi hurting his shoulder.
Russia coach Lyn Jones, a former Wales Ospreys and international manager, has included Sale prop Valery Morozov within his starting XV, one of two players who play with their club rugby outside of Russia.
Secondly row Andrei Ostrikov, who moved to Grenoble at the conclusion of the season from Sale, is the other.
Captains the side.
Leitch claims that the focus on the group is unlike anything that he has undergone with the Brave Blossoms.
„This is no normal turnout,“ he told a packed media conference.
„I am so nervous I have been creating a variety of mistakes in coaching – there is so many people and so many cameras. But I’m very proud to be a part of the World Cup and to be captain of the Japan rugby team“
The game will be staged in the close 50,000-capacity Tokyo Stadium.
Japan beat Russia from the groups‘ latest assembly and have been set the target of creating a by trainer Jamie Joseph.
Japan trainer Jamie Joseph:“I never read Japanese papers but I’ve never really considered us to be the favourites for this match.
„I’d say we’re going into this Test match and when we don’t play our best we are going to fight.
„The group has ready and before and we look forward to Friday night“
Japan: Tupou; Matsushima, Lafaele, Nakamura, Lemeki; Tamura, Nagare; Inagaki, Horie, Valu; Van der Walt, Moore; Labuschagne, Leitch, Himeno.
Replacements: Sakate, Nakajima, Ji-won, Thompson, Tui, Tanaka, Matsuda, Yamanaka
Russia: Artemyev Ostroushko, Gerasimov, Golosnitskiy Dorofeev; Morozov, Selskii, Gotovtsev, Ostrikov, Fedotko, Zhivatov, Gadzhiev, Vavilin
Replacements: Matveev, Polivalov, Bitiev Sychev, Perov, Gaisin, Sozonov
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