Leitch wants to make sure rugby's current popularity remains high

Jan 06, 2020
201912 Michael Season Launch
Michael Leitch participates in a news conference to mark the new Top League season.

Since the staging of a successful Rugby World Cup this year, the popularity of the game has been at an all-time high in Japan. This, however, wasn’t an entirely new experience for star Michael Leitch and some of his Brave Blossoms teammates.

The Japan national team posted three wins, including a stunning upset of South Africa, at the quadrennial event four years ago in England, sparking a rugby boom in the country.

But Leitch says this second wave is much larger and that the sport is being noticed by more people, likely thanks to Japan hosting the World Cup, which gave the public a chance to see the highest-level of the sport up close.

“Just having been informed about the television ratings, I thought that an incredible number of people watched the World Cup this time and those who had a chance to watch it have become (rugby) fans,” 31-year-old Leitch told reporters during a news conference on Tuesday in Fuchu, where his Top League team, Toshiba Brave Lupus team, is based.

Read the full article at The Japan Times