That team, led by Eddie Jones, won three matches, including a breathless 34-32 victory over South Africa in their opening game.
In a major change, this year also marks the first time an Asian nation has ever hosted the World Cup, and there is speculation that the United States could bid for the 2027 World Cup, which would be the first time it has ever been hosted in North America.
The defeat in Yokohama means Scotland are out of the tournament while the Brave Blossoms are into the quarter-finals for the first time in their history.
"For my team, the whole World Cup, we've prepared really, really well".
"What we should be doing is looking longer term and not looking at how much money we need to pay the bills next year".
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But the Japanese hit back quickly with Matsushima latching onto a superb, one-handed offload from Fukuoka to score his fifth try of the tournament.
And springbok fans are rightly nervous.
"We had the team and we had the ability at the start of the game to go on and win it by the necessary amount of points", continued Townsend. "I won't be sleeping well for the next week that's for sure".
Scotland face elimination if the match is axed and have warned they could take legal action if the game is cancelled. "I'm so anxious about my house", a 93-year-old man told national broadcaster NHK as he sheltered at a centre in Tateyama in Chiba east of Tokyo.
The highly-anticipated Japan-Scotland game, which had been under review due to assess the effects of Super Typhoon Hagibis hammering the country on Saturday, was given the green light in the morning local time as a bright, clear day dawned in Yokohama following the storm.
"I think it's still sinking in", a disappointed Canada coach Kingsley Jones said.
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Jacques, l'un des voisin de l'homme arrêté vendredi, affirme qu'il le connait depuis trente ans et estime que cela ne peut être qu'une erreur.
The Irish are anxious about the All Blacks though, including their kiwi coach Joe Schmidt. You could play at your best and still not get the result - that's why they are back-to-back world cup winners.
On the stroke of half-time, the jet-heeled Fukuoka plucked a high-bouncing Timothy Lafaele grubber kick out of the air to leave Scotland with a mountain to climb. Fukuoka nearly got around his opposite but lost his footing in the tackle and somehow managed a one-handed offload on his inside to Matsushima, who sprinted away to score.
"I can't wait for the semi-final against NZ".
However, spurred on by 70 thousand fans in the Tokyo national stadium, the hosts showed mettle to come from behind in the first half and defend against a relentless second-half onslaught.
The most powerful typhoon to hit Tokyo in decades has smashed into northern Japan after fierce rain and wind paralysed the capital, killing four people while millions are under evacuation warnings, rivers are flooded and streets are deserted.
"We were hoping that we would just go out and mingle, interact and just get to know some people but it looks like we might have other things to pitch in".
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The choice for voters between two quirky candidates who have never held political office has made for an unprecedented election . It said he scooped nearly 77 percent of the vote, compared to 23 percent for Karoui.