The rugby world is running scared of Japan, after they reached the quarter-final stage for the first time – and they’re not alone in fearing the World Cup hosts.
Paddy Power, who have already been stung by Jamie Joseph’s men winning their pool, have revealed that the Brave Blossoms going all the way would be their most expensive result for the tournament – surprisingly costlier than Ireland or England.
Pre-tournament, Japan were 20/1 to win Pool A, today triggering the bookies’ biggest pay-out in group winning betting by beating Scotland.
And, though they are 33/1 outsiders to win the tournament, with second-favourites South Africa in their way next Sunday, Japan will be hoping to repeat their heroics of Brighton 2015 to shock the Springboks, and the world, again.
Japan were 500/1 to win the tournament last year, a price which was slashed to 66/1 after their shock defeat of Ireland. That price has shortened again after reaching the last eight.
Asked about Japan’s chances spokesman Paddy Power said: “Japan are like a sportscar when in full flow – they’re lightning fast, dynamic and have incredible handling.
“And their race is far from run, even if they do approach a sizeable speedbump in South Africa.”
5/4 New Zealand
10/3 South Africa
* For Paddy Power’s full Rugby World Cup betting markets, including player of the tournament and top try scorer, go here.
* All odds correct at time of posting.