The introduction of Super Typhoon Hagibis to the Rugby World Cup which threatens the last pool matches over the weekend would very likely favour the Flying Fijians.
A bonus point win over Wales tonight would see the Flying Fijians poised for a better possibility of gaining a quarterfinal berth if the match between Wales and Uruguay in Kumamoto on Sunday is abandoned.
Fiji on seven points leapfrogs both Wales, nine, and Australia 11; to 12 points with a BP win tonight.
With the cancellation of the Wales, Uruguay match, the two teams will end with a 0-0 result with the four points on offer split two points apiece, which will very likely see the Red Dragons packing for an early flight back home to Cardiff; at 11 points.
The Wallabies has to defeat Georgia on Friday to secure the top spot for pool D which will ease their quarterfinal opponent as Les Bleus; alleviating the likelihood of facing the revamped Group C leaders, England.
Even if the Super Typhoon affected the Wallabies, Georgia match; the Aussies are through with the two points closing the pool stage with 13.
But if Fiji loses tonight, Wales will top the pool with 14 points and another five points on offer for the Uruguay match propelling the Welsh to the top of the pool.
Organisers have warned the storm could affect the final weekend of pool stages.
If the current forecast holds, the danger would appear to be lower for crunch games in the south-west (Ireland-Samoa on Saturday in Fukuoka and Wales-Uruguay on Sunday in Kumamoto).
The Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) has given Super Typhoon Hagibis its highest “violent” classification and tipped it to clip south-eastern Japan, near Tokyo and Yokohama, this weekend.
The storm’s sustained winds had decreased slightly to 250 kilometers (155 miles) per hour early this morning, making it the equivalent of a category 4 storm on the Saffir-Simpson wind scale.
Organisers said they had “robust contingency plans” and could change the venue of a fixture or the timing if bad weather looks set to affect the match.
“Such plans, if required, will only be actioned if the safety of teams, fans, and workforce can be guaranteed,” organisers said in a statement.
In the case of the England-France game, this would send Eddie Jones’s English side through as Pool C champions and a quarter-final meeting, likely against Australia.