TOKYO, 26 Sep - Seen in Beppu, a resort base for matches in nearby Oita, a statue of a bespectacled player, sporting a Brave Blossoms number eight shirt.
Who is this old boy? The inscription reads: "The man called ‘Shiny Uncle’ who loved children."
Turns out he is Kumahachi Aburaya, a rice wholesaler renowned for bringing tourism to this part of Kyushu - it is famous for its hot springs - and who was known as Shiny Uncle at the kids club he ran due to his bald head.
Nice touch, though he looks a mite less athletic than current wearer of the jersey, inspirational captain Michael Leitch.
Roll of honour
Three names featuring in Uruguay's sensational 30-27 triumph over Fiji on Wednesday have been around for all three of Los Teros’ wins at World Cup tournaments, starting in 1999.
Rugby buffs will be aware of the name Ormaechea. In 1999, Diego Ormaechea, in action below and who is soon to enter World Rugby’s Hall of Fame, led Los Teros to victory over Spain in Galashiels. He played three matches at age 40 and remains the oldest World Cup player to date.
Diego coached Uruguay to their second RWC victory, against Georgia in 2003, and on Wednesday watched with pride as sons Agustin and Juan Diego featured in the third and most prestigious victory, against a Fiji side who had been rated 33 points superior by the bookmakers' analysts.
Nicolas Brignoni and Guillermo Storace will also be remembered for being involved in this treble. They were on the field in Scotland 20 years ago, and in Australia four years later, where Brignoni scored a try in the defeat of Georgia.
In Kamaishi on Wednesday, Brignoni and Storace were there again, albeit as video analyst and assistant coach, respectively.
They will all be hoping to make it a fantastic four when Uruguay play Georgia in Kumagaya on Sunday.
Flag of convenience
Were those handling Fiji's twitter account so rattled after seeing their side beaten by Uruguay that they were hoping in vain for little easier opposition than Georgia in their next game? Instead of posting the Georgian flag in their post-match update, they mistakenly posted Denmark's.
The Danes are ranked 78th in the world and are competing with Moldova, Finland, Norway and Austria in Conference 2 North of the Rugby Europe International Championships. Georgia are ranked 11th.
Elene, the five-year-old daughter of Georgia's Jaba Bregvadze, has a problem with her daddy playing rugby. "She's always angry when she is watching my games because she thinks the other players are hurting me," said Bregvadze, pictured below with his girl.
Bregvadze, who became the first Georgian to play Super Rugby when he joined Japan's Sunwolves in 2018, said: "She even thinks my team-mates are hurting me, and she says she will come to training with me and get angry at them. That's why she is daddy's girl - she is always trying to protect me."
Son of a gun
All Blacks star Sonny Bill Williams, who is chasing a third straight Rugby World Cup title, already has reason to remember RWC 2019 fondly.
The gifted sporting all-rounder announced on social media that baby No.4 is on the way. "Sometimes I really don't think I deserve all the blessings I've received in my life. Alhumdulliah Alhumdulliah Alhumdulliah!! Love & blessings fam," the 34-year-old centre posted.
Williams, a practising Muslim, has two daughters and a son with wife Alana.
The art of Zen
Canada's first match of the tournament, against Italy on Thursday, was in Fukuoka, also home to Japan's first Zen temple.
The Shofukuji Temple, nestled in the charming old city part of this steamy seaside metropolis in the south of Japan, was built in 1195 by Zen master Yosai, who was pals with local shogun Minamoto no Yoritomo.
A smattering of Canadian fans were spotted respectfully ambling around the temple gardens on Thursday morning, perhaps hoping for a little divine inspiration for their team's RWC 2019 bow (though they would have been looking to the heavens later when the Canucks went down 48-7 to Italy).
After making his World Cup debut on Tuesday, it was time for another first on Wednesday for Samoa prop Paul Alo-Emile.
While the rest of the team were listening to music, playing video games or chatting away in the airport, Alo-Emile was busy feeding his eight-month-old son, Romeo. "It's the first time I'm flying with him," said Alo-Emile, pictured below with Romeo. "My wife (Scarlett) is also here but I thought I'd take some heat off her."
As Samoa, who face Scotland in Kobe on Monday, landed in Osaka, prop Alo-Emile confirmed that the trip had had its hiccups. "He screamed a lot, but then he fell asleep."
Stat of the day
Japan's Pieter Labuschagne will become the fourth South Africa-born player to captain a country other than South Africa at the Rugby World Cup. The others are Kevin Dalzell (USA), Quintin Geldenhuys (Italy) and Dion O'Cuinneagain (Ireland).