The Rugby World Cup (RWC) in England is heating up with less than a week to go till the quarter finals where South Africa will meet Wales.
As the RWC bids farewell to the many teams who have not made it through to the quarters (including host country England!), it is perhaps Japan who will be missed the most.
After their surprise win against South Africa in the teams’ opening match, the Japanese rugby players – and fans – won the hearts of many in England with their passion and good humour.
Japan leave the UK, having made history in this world cup by securing the biggest upset in rugby history (when they beat South Africa) and by being the first team to be knocked out with three wins!
Even though Japan beat SA, Samoa and the USA (28-18) – their defeat by Scotland was too great to achieve enough points and they finished third in Pool B, above the USA who lost all their matches.
A Japanese fan, Shogo Hida, wrote on Rugby World Cup’s facebook page: “We should be proud of this achievement… Thank you for your support (especially from English supporters at the stadiums)! See you in Japan in 4 years! We will welcome you! We will never forget the friendship we made through this tournament 🙂 ”
Japan will host the ninth Rugby World Cup in 2019, becoming the first nation in Asia to host the competition.
As announced during the world cup, Japan’s coach Eddie Jones will be leaving Japan to head to South Africa where he will take over as coach for the Stormers. (Watch Eddie Jones’ brilliant video interview below where he discusses this RWC and the amazing support Japan enjoyed.)
After losing to Japan early in the RWC, South Africa won its subsequent matches to come out on top of Pool B.
According to reports the Springboks have now replaced England’s team at their training base at the luxurious Pennyhill Park in Surrey. The hotel and spa includes indoor gym and a field that matches that of Twickenham!
Farewell Japan…and thank you for the memories. See you in 2019.
Japan ends RWC2015 with a win
Interview with Japan Coach Eddie Jones as Japan leaves the World Cup
First Tries of the Rugby World Cup
Uploaded by: Rugby World Cup – “Well the pool stages are officially over for #RWC2015…but why not look at each of the 20 participating team’s first tries at the tournament! Thanks for the memories.”
A South African Fans’ Memories
Yvette Janse Van Rensburg: “Our moments in the 2015 Rugby World Cup…”
Our moments in the 2015 Rugby World Cup
Posted by Yvette Janse Van Rensburg on Sunday, October 11, 2015
SA Fans on Live TV during the Japan/SA World Cup match
Marvin Theo Marais (see photos above) with Justin Williams and girlfriend Felicity caught on ITV during the SA vs Japan match in Brighton.