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Ireland know what to expect tomorrow, but the conditions that await at the Kobe Misaki Stadium will be like nothing they have played in before.
Ordinarily, the majority of players would have no problem under a roof as they have regularly experienced the Cardiff’s Principality Stadium, as well as the La Defense Arena in Paris, but this is different. Very, very different.
The week-long warm-weather training camp in Portugal in August was designed to prepare the squad for what lay ahead in Japan, but it is almost impossible to replicate the humidity that beckons.
Owen Farrell was hardly trading state secrets when he told his father Andy how tough it was when England beat USA at the same venue last week.
Ireland’s defence coach relayed that information to his squad, yet it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that players from the northern hemisphere are not used to these hot and sticky conditions.
Ireland watched Scotland’s win over Samoa on Monday night and they were struck by the amount of handling errors.
It made for a poor spectacle and while it is difficult not to feel that the players and spectators are being short-changed by having games on in the Kobe furnace, it is understandable that World Rugby ruled that all roofs would be closed due to Japan’s changeable weather. Scotland and Samoa coughed
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