Photo/IllutrationMembers of the Japanese team practice at the Prince Chichibu Memorial Rugby Stadium in Tokyo on Oct. 8 to prepare for the match against Scotland scheduled for Oct. 13. (Yosuke Fukudome)

Organizers of the 9th Rugby World Cup (RWC) are weighing whether games to be held Oct. 12-13 should be played at substitute venues behind closed doors due to an approaching typhoon.

The seven matches are final pool games for each team. The outcome of the one between Japan and Scotland in Pool A to be held in Yokohama on Oct. 13 will likely decide whether Japan advances to the knockout round in which eight teams will compete.

The game between New Zealand and Italy to be held in Toyota, Aichi Prefecture, on Oct. 12 and the one between England and France to be held in Yokohama the same day will have a huge impact on who takes home the trophy this year.

“Safety is a top priority, but we do not want to cancel any games if possible,” said a senior official of the organizing committee.

The powerful typhoon, the 19th of the season, could make landfall Oct. 12-13.

Other options organizers are considering include postponing the games until Oct. 14, the final day of a three-day weekend.

Moving to different venues or postponing games would be a major headache in terms of team transportation and accommodation, as well as getting the word out to fans.

As of the morning of Oct. 9, no decision had been made.

“We are looking at various scenarios and preparing for them as best we can," said a senior official.

If games are held at substitute venues, organizers plan to make a decision two days beforehand, which means an announcement could be made as early as Oct. 10.

In the event a game is canceled, a decision must be made at least six hours before it starts.

Under RWC rules, the game would be regarded as having ended in a draw and both teams will be awarded two points each.

No RWC game has ever been canceled before.

Organizers at one time considered cancelling the match between France and the United States held in Fukuoka on Oct. 2 due to Typhoon No. 18. But the game went ahead as scheduled after the typhoon veered away from Japan.