The whole of Japan is watching - Sir John Kirwan

Ryan Bridge 20/09/2019

The Rugby World Cup kicks off tonight within Japan with the hosts taking on Russia, followed on the weekend by the All Blacks going against South Africa.

For a unique and thoroughly qualified look forward to the opening games Sir John Kirwan joins Ryan Bridge on Magic Talk Drive telling him that the whole country is watching and he is excited for the tournament to begin.

Beautiful day here, 30 degrees. I'm standing in a Japanese Garden. I'm feeling pretty good.

Former All Black, World Cup Winner and previous coach for Japan Rugby Sir Kirwan said that the tournament is looking to start with some of the biggest games coming up early.

He explains how Japan will be motivated to perform well in their opening game against Russia while over the weekend the clash between South Africa and New Zealand sets the titans up early.

The pair muse on the impact that the referees can have on the game with a French referee for the first game Sir John notes, "everytime we have had a French Referee we have gotten a yellow or a red card."

Ryan then asks why have the Japanese got an affinity with the All Blacks, something the former All Black and Japan coach describes as having to do with the values of the Japanese and of the close relationship between the two countries.

You can watch the full interview above.