Rugby World Cup

Nov 16, 2019 (Sat.)

This summer, three students of the Asian Studies Program at Kansai Gaidai University were given the opportunity to intern at the Rugby World Cup.

45 matches were held in Japan during the Rugby World Cup between September 20th and November 2nd.

Mr Rupa Samanta, Mr Patrick Johns, and Ms Jordan Traut undertook the journalism internship for the Rugby News Service, the organisation responsible for the Rugby World Cup website and app. In eight matches held over three weeks in Kansai, they watched the games from the media zone, participated in press conferences, asked athletes interview questions both pre- and post-game, and had countless other once-in-a-lifetime experiences.

Most notably, not one of the three students had any background in journalism. However, they were undoubtedly successful in completing their jobs – of seven their quotes were published in official RNS articles.

When asked what qualities he believed to be most invaluable to a job like this, Mr Rupa Samanta responded that it was how to be empathetic and sensitive. “Straight after the game, sometimes [the athletes] have just lost so they’re a bit… down in the dumps, but you still have to maintain positivity”, he said.

For Mr Patrick Johns, the most challenging aspect was being in the mix zone. “When you’re in the mix zone getting the quotes it’s sometimes a bit nerve-wracking…it is a bit intimidating - you don’t want to ask the wrong thing”.

Mr Johns then shared one of his most memorable moments: “when I saw Canada play South Africa… all the Japanese fans like cheering for the underdog, so they were cheering: CA-NA-DA”.

When asked if they would participate again given the opportunity, the answer was a resounding “yes”.