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Canada rugby players help typhoon clean-up after game canceled in Japan

Canadian rugby players helped with recovery efforts in Kamaishi, Japan following the cancellation of their match, which was called off because of the threat of Typhoon Hagibis.

At least 31 people have died and 186 people have been injured in the wake of Typhoon Hagibis, which made landfall Saturday night, bringing hurricane-force winds, heavy rain and widespread flooding.

The storm weakened to a tropical depression as it continued to move across central Japan on Sunday. According to the Prime Minister’s office of Japan, “record-setting heavy rains and windstorms have caused flooding and landslides.”

More than 230,000 people were evacuated ahead of the storm, with emergency orders issued for many cities around the greater Tokyo area.

The typhoon, which came as Japan hosts the Rugby World Cup, has meant that some matches have been preemptively canceled.

Saturday’s games between New Zealand and Italy, as well as England’s match against France, were called off because of the approaching typhoon.

Rugby World Cup praised the Canadian players after posting a video to social media showing them assisting with the clean up.

“Following the cancellation of their match in Kamaishi, @RugbyCanada players headed out to help with recovery efforts, showing the true values of the game,” tournament organizers posted to Twitter.

“Amazing scenes and brilliant to see from the team,” they added.

Around 27,000 Self-Defense Forces personnel are taking on rescue operations, according to the Japanese Prime Minister’s office.

“We are very disappointed to lose the opportunity to compete against Namibia,” Kingsley Jones, head coach, men’s 15s rugby and director of men’s rugby performance said in a statement Saturday.

“We have worked very hard at this World Cup but also believe we have put in place some important building blocks that will set us up for success in the next four years leading up to 2023. We are very appreciative for all the support we have received back home, and of course, send our very best wishes for the safety of all of the residents in Japan who have been impacted by Typhoon Hagibis,” he added.

CNN