Diplomats mark start of Rugby World Cup at UN headquarters

September 20, 2015 11:13 am 

NEW YORK, Sept. 19 — Diplomats from around 10 countries gathered at the UN headquarters Friday to watch the opening game of the Rugby World Cup, a match between England and Fiji played in Twickenham, London.

At the event hosted by the British mission, British Ambassador Matthew Rycroft said, "I think that rugby does encapsulate the very best of sport."

Among those invited were ambassadors from the United States, New Zealand and Japan, the host of the 2019 Rugby World Cup.

Wearing the team uniform of Japan's Brave Blossoms, Japanese Ambassador Motohide Yoshikawa said global sporting events can foster a sense of fellowship at international organizations.

Ambassadors and mission staff will be closely following the fortunes of their countries' teams, he noted.

"Normally, we deal with a variety of matters (with diplomats from other countries) in negotiations and it's important that we can also get together to talk about a different topic."

Yoshikawa said it would be good if Japan could sponsor a similar event when Tokyo hosts the next Rugby World Cup in 2019.

England beat Fiji 35-11 in Friday's opener. (PNA/Kyodo)

JBP/RSM

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