With Japan preparing to become the first Asian nation to host Rugby World Cup, a 46-day tour of all host cities and Top League teams, will provide a fitting and ambitious way to mark the major milestone.

Kicking off in style with a public extravaganza at Shibuya 109 – one of central Tokyo’s busiest and most recognizable landmarks – the Webb Ellis Cup will be the inspirational centerpiece of a festival that will encourage this sports-loving nation to connect through rugby, create lasting memories and celebrate the hosting of what will be the biggest sporting event to be held in the Land of the Rising Sun for nearly 20 years.

From Sapporo City in the north to Kumamoto in the south, from Fukuoka to Kamaishi and many more places in between, the cup will be the guest of honour as this exciting festival travels the length and breadth of Japan. In all, the following prefectures will be visited: Tokyo, Saitama, Oita, Shizuoka, Iwate, Kumamoto, Osaka, Aichi, Hyogo, Fukuoka, Sapporo and Kanagawa.

The festival will reach a fitting climax at the international stadium in Yokohama, coinciding with the Japan v Australia match on 4 November, almost two years to the day before the Rugby World Cup 2019 final is played at the very same venue.

Japan Rugby 2019 CEO Akira Shimazu said: “We are delighted to announce details of the Rugby World Cup 2019 two-years-to-go festival that will connect the host cities, create a nationwide celebration and go forward to inspire and excite the people of Japan ahead of the tournament."

Rugby World Cup Tournament Director Alan Gilpin added: “The two-years-to-go festival represents a fantastic opportunity for the whole of Japan to celebrate hosting Rugby World Cup 2019 and engage with activities that will give a flavor of what is to come in two years’ time.”

Hosted once every four years, the Rugby World Cup is rugby's centrepiece event. It is the big stage that rugby players from all over the world dream of reaching. Held over the course of seven weeks, it is the 3rd largest sports event in the world after the summer olympics and the Football World Cup.

Tournament General Information

Rugby in Japan  - Hosted once every four years, the Rugby in Japan is rugby's center piece event. It is the big stage for rugby players from all over the world dream of reaching.  Held over the course of seven weeks, it is the 3rd largest sports event in the world after the Summer Games and the Soccer World Cup.

Tournament Dates:  20th September (Fri) - 2nd November (Sat), 2019, Opening Match 20th September (Fri), 2019 Tokyo Stadium and Finals  2nd November (Sat), 2019, Yokohama Stadium, Kanagawa.

Teams - 20 participating teams.  Format -  Total of 48 matches: 1 Pool stages: 4 pools of 5 teams, 40 pool matches in total. 2 Finals: Quarter finals, semi finals, bronze final, finals with 12 Match Venues across the whole of Japan.