Streaming issues? Report here
CapeTalk Classics
14:00 - 21:00

Up Next: The Magic Bus on CapeTalk Classics
See full line-up
CapeTalk Classics
14:00 - 21:00

Eight unexpected things from a Rugby World Cup trip to Tokyo

26 October 2019 9:33 AM
702 and CapeTalk producer Cecile Basson, travelled to Japan during the Rugby World Cup, and shares some insights.

After more than 36 hours of travelling back from Tokyo to Cape Town, I can now properly reflect on what was a spectacular experience at the Rugby World Cup in Japan - the first one ever in Asia. I was there for three full days and saw two matches in Tokyo – the New Zealand vs Ireland and South Africa vs Japan games. Here are some of the highlights.

1. Snacks and drinks in the stadium were standardised, as they usually are with these big events. But, it had a lovely local flair. I ordered something called “hot chicken sticks” for ¥500.

You need to divide their currency by about 7.5 to get to the approximate rand value. So, this cost me about R67. These spicy deep-fried chicken strips with crispy fried pieces of chili on the side were an absolute highlight. Also on the menu was ‘pork wrapped onigiri’ and ‘deep-fried soy meat’ for vegans.

2. The speed of the free wifi in the stadiums was almost as impressive as the Japanese bullet trains. Seriously, South Africa cannot be a successful host of a massive sports event ever again if we cannot offer the stadium goers a working, fast and free connection to the outer world.

3. At both the games I attended, there was a brief moment of silence before the games kicked off to remember the victims of the deadly Typhoon Hagibis that struck Japan during the tournament. The seconds of silence from the almost 50 000 fans at the Tokyo stadium was incredibly moving, with literally no one speaking to observe the powerful moment.

4. Of course, there was some Karaoke on the big screens at the Tokyo stadium. All of the fans and there were many from Japan, Ireland, South African, and New Zealand at the games I attended, sang in unison songs from the screen such as Neil Diamond’s Sweet Caroline and Brian Adams’ summer of '69. It was weird but sweet.

5. Yes, the Japanese fans were fierce in their red and white jerseys. But it was the discipline, the songs, and respect of Irish lot that impressed me most. Even after their team suffered an embarrassing loss to the All Blacks, they stayed to the bitter end and applauded their captain Rory Best bowing out of his 14-year career in rugby. While we supported them against the All Blacks in their quarter-final, they did not return the favour when the Springboks played the home team the next day. I did have some pleasure in them losing twice.

6. South African fans did not take a backseat in our performance. I was part of a block of about 200 in green and gold. We were determined for the team to hear us and the cameras to film us. We sang Shosholoza and Juluka’s Impi. I even at one stage heard some Mshini Wami, which was weird, but at least we all knew the words.

7. Catching ANC Johannesburg chairperson Geoff Makhubo teaching Japanese fans to sing our anthem.

8. And lastly, the smart toilets of Tokyo. Of all the toilets I used, the only one that looked familiar was the one in the stadium. All of the others had functions like seat warming, spraying in all kinds of angles, deodorising and even can even play noises if needed for ‘privacy’. And here is a collection of Tokyo’s impressive thrones.

Cecile Basson is a producer on the Money Show on 702 and CapeTalk. She was hosted in Japan for two matches by MTN, the headline sponsor of the Springboks.

26 October 2019 9:33 AM

More from Lifestyle


CapeTalk's weekly hot picks: TV, streaming, podcasts and movies

28 February 2020 3:37 PM

Pippa Hudson checks in with TV, series, movie and podcast fundis to find out what to watch and listen to in the coming week.

Share this:
Read More arrow_forward

Pediatrician entertaining patient children doctor medical 123rflifestyle 123rf

Meet Paulo de Valdoleiros, the doctor who charges only what patients can afford

28 February 2020 3:05 PM

"I believe we come to the planet for others. We need each other. Love is not a feeling. It’s taking care of your people," he says.

Share this:
Read More arrow_forward

Valentine's Day dog rose 123rflifestyle 123rf

10 most-read articles on CapeTalk in February 2020

28 February 2020 10:35 AM

These were the most-read, most-shared and most talked-about articles on Cape Talk in February 2020.

Share this:
Read More arrow_forward


CapeTalk website shortlisted for Bookmark Awards 2020

26 February 2020 11:34 AM

CapeTalk receives recognition at the prestigious Bookmarks Awards 2020 for the new-look website.

Share this:
Read More arrow_forward


Earn below R22 000? You may qualify for a housing subsidy of up to R121 626

25 February 2020 1:12 PM

There’s a government subsidy you may not have heard about. Abongile Nzelenzele interviews 1Life’s Katharine Liese.

Share this:
Read More arrow_forward


The safest investment in South Africa guarantees returns that beat inflation

25 February 2020 10:34 AM

This boring yet brilliant investment is safer than money in the bank and often more lucrative.

Share this:
Read More arrow_forward

Children technology laptop tablet cellphone 123rfparenting 123rflifestyle 123rf

What parents need to now about TikTok (and why your kids love it)

25 February 2020 9:20 AM

Many of the videos are filmed by young teens in bedrooms, and other concerns are the rise of potentially dangerous challenges.

Share this:
Read More arrow_forward


Is it legal to flash other motorists to warn them about an upcoming speed trap?

24 February 2020 1:44 PM

Some traffic authorities try to use “defeating the ends of justice” to arrest motorists, says Howard Dembovsky (Justice Project).

Share this:
Read More arrow_forward


[WATCH] Angry African elephant charges tourists, guide shows mad driving skills

24 February 2020 12:12 PM

This astonishing video shows a tour guide driver reversing to escape the stampeding elephant in a game park.

Share this:
Read More arrow_forward


Late school fees, underpaying by cents… little things smash your credit profile

24 February 2020 11:31 AM

Financial Planner Gerald Mwandiambira on how important a credit profile is and the surprising little things that affect it.

Share this:
Read More arrow_forward