Japan head coach Jamie Joseph has supported promises by prop Yusuke Kizu which Ireland scrummage illegally, ahead of their World Cup Pool A match in Shizuoka on Saturday.
Kizu has promised that Ireland prop Cian Healy”steps out” and scrummages in at an illegal angle.
Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt insisted as he responded to the claim of Kizu that his side have one of the scrums in the Test arena.
However, after Japan had named their team, which saw squad captain Michael Leitch’s demotion to the bench, Brave Blossoms boss Joseph consented that”occasionally they’re illegal” in the scrum.
“I believe first thing, Kizu is a young man, probably his very initial media experience, so that would be the very first thing around Kizusan,” explained Joseph.
“We’re coming up from a really powerful scrum. Yes, at times they are prohibited, but at all times they’re a scrum.
“We all know that is a tough area of the sport, but we have actually enhanced our scrum and lineout recently and it is a place we’ve been focusing on weekly ”
Hosts Japan beat Russia 30-10 in Tokyo on Friday into kick-off the World Cup but the players announced that they had been overawed by the event in a performance that is largely uninspiring.
Joseph confessed Japan will desire”the game of their own lives” to beat Ireland and insisted skipper Leitch still has a big part to perform , despite starting against the No 1 rated side on the planet.
Pieter Labuschagne will captain Japan, with Joseph backing Leitch to really have an impact.
“That which I think around the sport, regarding our seat, we’ve got to have an effect,” added Joseph.
“If we’re going to be in a position to win the game, it’s going to come back down to the last five or 10 minutes and we’ll need clear leadership.
“Michael has experienced an injury all year, he’s only played four or five games, and he is a really crucial player. But we have a good deal of in-form gamers and quality loose forward.
“It’s a massive match for us and those players will need to play the best match of their own lives; that’s what they will need to be successful on Saturday.”
Joseph is targeting a location at the quarter-finals of the World Cup for the very first time as part of Japan’s legacy hosting the championship.
“In relation to heritage for the tournament, on our goals, as a team we wish to do something we have never achieved before and that is create the best eight,” he said.
“That’ll leave a legacy for rugby in Japan, however, the quality of our play and the way we conduct ourselves as a group is also important.”
Japan: 15 Ryohei Yamanaka, 14 Kotaro Matsushima, 13 Timothy Lafaele, 12 Ryoto Nakamura, 11 William Tupou, 10 Yu Tamura, Yutaka Nagare; 1 Keita Inagaki, two Shota Horie, 3 Koo Ji-won, 4 Luke Thompson, 5 James Moore, 6 Kazuki Himeno, seven Pieter Labuschagne (capt), 8 Amanaki Mafi.
Replacements: 16 Atsushi Sakate, 17 Isileli Nakajima, 18 Asaeli Ai Valu, 19 Wimpie Van Der Walt, 20 Michael Leitch, 21 Fumiaki Tanaka, 22 Rikiya Matsuda, 23 Lomano Lemeki.