Rugby World Cup Kicks Off In Japan

Rugby World Cup kicks off in Japan

The 2019 Rugby World Cup has started in Japan. Twenty teams will compete for the title. In the tournament's opener on Friday, Japan faces Russia.

The teams are split into four pools, with the top two in each advancing to the knockout stages.

Japan is currently ranked 10th in the world, and will be hoping to reach the quarter-finals for the first time.

Fans have been streaming to the stadium in west Tokyo from early Friday. It's the first time the tournament has been held in Asia and more than 90 percent of the tickets have already been sold.

Among the favorites for the title, New Zealand, currently ranked second in the world, faces South Africa in Yokohama on Saturday.

The All Blacks are hoping to become the first nation to win the cup three times in a row, if they defend the title they took home four years ago.

The Springboks are looking to repeat their triumphs on home soil in 1995 and in France in 2007.

Saturday's match has the makings of a classic between two teams who know each other well.

The next 6 weeks will see 48 games at 12 venues across Japan as the players compete for rugby union's highest honor.