Sergio Parisse has reacted angrily, saying World Rugby’s decision to cancel Italy’s final Rugby World Cup pool match “ridiculous”.
“It is difficult to know that we won’t have the chance to play a match against one of the great teams,” Parisse said. “If New Zealand needed four or five points against us it would not have been cancelled.
“It is ridiculous that a decision of this nature has been made because it isn’t like the fans arrived yesterday. It is ridiculous that there was no plan B, because it isn’t news that typhoons hit Japan.
“Sure, everyone might think that Italy versus New Zealand being cancelled counts for nothing because we’d have lost anyway, but we deserved to be respected as a team.
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“We had the chance to play in a big stadium, against a great team. The alternative is plan B. When you organise a World Cup you should have one in place.
“Sure, if Italy and New Zealand decide they don’t want to play, then fine, but as I said before if New Zealand needed the points it wouldn’t have been cancelled.”