Chichibunomiya Rugby Stadium

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Chichibunomiya Rugby Stadium
Chichibunomiya3.JPG
Former names Tokyo Rugby Stadium (1947–1953)
Location Japan Kitaaoyama, Minato, Tokyo, Japan
Coordinates 35°40′21.37″N 139°43′5.41″E / 35.6726028°N 139.7181694°E / 35.6726028; 139.7181694
Opened 1947
Renovated 1973, 2003
Owner Japan Sport Council
Operator Japan Sport Council
Surface Grass
Capacity 27,188

Chichibunomiya Rugby Stadium (秩父宮ラグビー場 Chichibunomiya Ragubī-jō?) (also called Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium) in the Aoyama district of central Tokyo is the spiritual home of Japanese rugby union and the headquarters of the Japan Rugby Football Union.

Facilities[edit]

The stadium currently seats 25,194 spectators, but only part of the stands are covered. A large electronic scoreboard was added to the grounds as a step toward modernization before the fifth Rugby World Cup in 2003.

On April 19, 2007 it was announced that the stadium was to be equipped with lights for night games by the end of July, to assist with the RWC 2015 bid. The first rugby game under lights was Japan v Asian Barbarians in August 2007, the send-off for Japan going to RWC 2007. Since then it has been used for the first Top League game of the 2007-8 season between Suntory Sungoliath and Toshiba Brave Lupus, also played under lights and won 10-3 by the former on October 26, 2008.

History[edit]

Originally completed in 1947, it was at first called Tokyo Rugby Stadium. In 1953 the name was changed to Chichibunomiya Rugby Stadium. The stadium also served as a venue for football matches in the 1964 Summer Olympics.

The name Chichibunomiya commemorates the sporting prince, Prince Chichibu, who was not a rugby union player but was passionately fond of the sport and died in 1953. His statue is in the stadium.

On February 3, 2008 snow prevented two Top League games being played in the 13th and final round of the fifth season. They were postponed to February 9.

Starting in 2012, the stadium will host the Japan Sevens, a newly created event on the IRB Sevens World Series for men's national rugby sevens teams. The tournament will be the seventh on the circuit schedule, with the first edition to straddle March and April.[1]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Japan joins expanded HSBC Sevens World Series" (Press release). International Rugby Board. 18 August 2011. Retrieved 29 August 2011. 

External links[edit]