The Japan men's team fell 19-17 to Scotland in their first-round Pool B opening match at the Rugby World Cup Sevens in Moscow on Friday.
Japan trailed 12-0 at the half and 19-0 just a minute into the second half before Lote Tuqiri scored a try for Japan, and Katsuyuki Sakai converted as Japan made it 19-7.
Shota Emi came off the bench four minutes later and, two seconds after setting foot on the pitch, scored a second try for Japan, though he failed to convert it. Kosuke Hashino's try after the hooter gave Japan a chance for a draw. Sakai, however, was unable to convert, allowing the Scots to walk off winners.
"We may have been nervous at the start," Japan captain Sakai said. "We were unable to break through, and when contesting the ball they kept us under pressure."
"We learned that if we attacked, we could score tries."
Chris Dean opened the scoring for Scotland with a try 1 minute, 32 seconds into the game. Alan Turnball crossed three minutes later and Colin Gregor converted. Michael Fedo gave the Scots a commanding lead just 39 seconds into the second half with Gregor adding the extras.
The men's team, appearing in the event for the sixth time, play South Africa and host Russia on Saturday. The Japan women's team, making their second World Cup appearance, are also in action on Saturday against England, France and Russia.