Japanese merchandise flies off the shelves

2015-09-21 18:03
Japan’s players celebrate their historic, surprise victory over the Springboks in their rugby World Cup opening match at the Brighton Community Stadium yesterday. Picture: Julian Finney / Getty Images

London - The Rugby World Cup's official merchandise store on London's Oxford Street was forced to pull down its shutters early on Sunday, after it was besieged by Japanese fans celebrating their team's stunning victory over South Africa at the weekend.

The shop had been unable to cater to the demands of fans looking to snap up mementoes of the Brave Blossoms' 34-32 shock win over the twice champions, said Brett Gosper, chief executive of the sport's global governing body.

"We had to close #RWC2015 official merchandise store on Oxford St yesterday due to overwhelming merchandise demand from the Japanese public," Gosper tweeted on Monday.

Hosted by England, the Sept. 18-Oct. 31 World Cup is the biggest to date, and organisers expect it to generate commercial revenue of around £240 million.

A Japan rugby shirt retails in the shop for £70 pounds, while at the other end of the scale a Japanese enamel badge costs five pounds.

Japan face Scotland in Gloucester on Wednesday, before South Africa take on Samoa in Birmingham at the weekend

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