Rugby World Cup 2019 opening ceremony: Start time UK, TV channel, and who is performing in Japan?

JAPAN are set to get the party started on this year’s Rugby World Cup.

Rugby Union is a minority sport in the country and the hosts are hoping that a successful run in the tournament will inspire a nation.

Nineteen other nations are looking to wrestle the trophy off New Zealand
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Reigning champions New Zealand are the bookies favourites to life the Webb Ellis Trophy, with England, Australia, Wales and Ireland all in with a big shout.

When is the Rugby World Cup opening ceremony?

THIS is the first time that the World Cup has come to Asia and Japan.

The hosts traditionally get the tournament started and will face Russia at Tokyo Stadium on Friday, September 20.

Kick-off is at 11.45am BST.

There’s no big Olympics style opening ceremony planned – Japan are saving that for next year.

Instead there will be a 15-minute show before kick-off in Tokyo, getting underway around 11.30am UK time.

Which TV channel and live stream can I watch it on?

JAPAN’s Pool A clash with Russia is live on free-to-air TV in the UK.

And as such you can catch the game and opening ceremony on ITV1.

Coverage begins at 11.30am.

If you want to stream, the ITV Hub or TVplayer are the places to go – but make sure you have a valid TV licence.

Who is performing?

THE ceremony has been kept under wraps until the day itself.

But rumours suggest that Japan’s version of the Red Arrows – the Blue Impulse – will be making an appearance in the Tokyo skies.

And singer Ayaka Hirahara is set to perform on the pitch before the players do battle.

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