Rugby World Cup 2019 pools drawn in Japan

The draw for the World Cup, which will be the first ever hosted in Asia, was conducted in Kyoto, Japan on Wednesday.

Scotland beat Japan in a match played just four days after that historic triumph over the Springboks, and the Japanese just failed to get out of the pool.

The other two qualifiers are so far identified only as Europe 1 and Play-off Winners.

All Black coach Steve Hansen is one of the rugby luminaries who will help pick the marbles out of the five pots to decide the make-up of the four pools for the tournament.

After failing to get out of pool play in 2015 England face another battle to get out of its pool at the 2019 World Cup in Japan.

We want to win the World Cup. With home advantage in the next tournament, they will be even tougher opponents according to the head coach.

The Springboks, ranked seventh in the world rankings, suffered the biggest surprise defeat in the sport's history when Japan beat them in the pool stages of the 2015 World Cup in England.

Now transformed under the leadership of Eddie Jones and winners of back-to-back Six Nations titles, England were paired with European rivals France and band three powerhouses Argentina during the 10 May draw in Kyoto.

"We don't control who we get".

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"France are probably the most improved team in world rugby, Argentina are improving rapidly, so it couldn't be any better".

"We are in a very tough group, and England and France will not be the only teams in that group to watch out for", said Pumas coach Daniel Hourcade.

They will be facing South Africa and Italy.

Another African team, most likely Namibia or Kenya, and the victor of the Repechage round of qualifying will complete their pool.

It seems odd that the second-seeded team in the world would be on the same side of the draw as New Zealand but that's the way it is set up. It's likely they're going to continue to improve over the next few years.

Jones though is anything but perturbed and says he is already relishing the challenge. "That will be great motivation for our players".

Two-time winners Australia went into Pool D with Wales and Georgia, while Ireland will face Scotland and hosts Japan in Pool A. Two more teams will be added to each group after qualifying, which England will now watch closely after their nightmare showing in 2015.

The current World Champions have been drawn in Pool B along with 1995 World Cup winners South Africa, six-time World Cup rivals Italy, the victor of Africa 1 and the Repechage winners from the qualifying tournament.

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