TBILISI, Georgia (AP) — Flyhalf Kosei Ono's late dropped goal lifted Japan over Georgia 25-22 in rugby at Mikheil Meskhi Stadium on Saturday.

Japan won its first ever test in Europe last weekend in Romania. Now it can't lose on the continent.

It came from behind to draw level at 22-22 with eight minutes to go.

Japan was put back on defence then counterattacked 80 meters to set up Ono for the winning points.

Georgia led 9-0 after 12 minutes thanks to penalties by Merab Kvirikashvili. Japan struck with two penalties to Ayumu Goromaru.

Japan then came under siege from a Georgia side playing a man down. But Georgia conceded a penalty. Winger Hirotoki Onozawa, Japan's most experienced player, tapped five meters out from his own tryline and finished off the move 95 meters later for a converted try and 13-9 halftime lead.

Kvirikashvili added two more penalties and his own converted try for 22-13, but Japan clawed back and Ono capped the comeback.


Japan 25 (Hirotoki Onozawa try; Ayumu Goromaru conversion, 5 penalties, Kosei Ono dropped goal), Georgia 22 (Merab Kvirikashvili try, conversion, 5 penalties). HT: 13-9