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Parisse said it was “ridiculous” for organisers not to have an alternative to cancellation
The Italy captain even suggested there was an element of disrespect in the decision
But All Blacks coach Steve Hansen said cancellation was a “no-brainer”
Tokyo: Italy captain Sergio Parisse has slammed the decision to cancel his side’s World Cup match against New Zealand because of Super Typhoon Hagibis, saying the game would have gone ahead if the All Blacks needed a win.
The number eight also said it was “ridiculous” for organisers not to have an alternative to cancellation as “it isn’t news that typhoons hit Japan”.
Italy needed a bonus win against New Zealand if they were to progress to the quarter-finals. Image credit: Twitter/@Federugby
In an unprecedented move at a Rugby World Cup, organisers scrapped Saturday’s matches between England and France, and New Zealand and Italy — with both fixtures in the path of the powerful typhoon.
While England and France both advance to the quarter-finals regardless, with two points each from a Pool C match now deemed a draw, Thursday’s announcement ended Italy’s slim hopes of reaching the last eight.
Admittedly, this would have required Italy to beat three-time world champions New Zealand for the first time — and with a bonus point.
“It is difficult to know that we won’t have the chance to play a match against one of the great teams,” Parisse told reporters in Toyota City on Thursday.
“If New Zealand needed four or five points against us, it would not have been cancelled,” he added in comments published on the official Rugby World Cup news service but later removed.
With a match meant to be played at the City of Toyota Stadium officially declared a scoreless draw as a result of the cancellation, the points Italy receiv
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