Former captain Ryan Jones believes the Wales team have been awarded”a massive elevator” before the Rugby World Cup, following 15,000 people queued to observe their receptive training session at Kitakyushu.
Wales arrived at the arena where they’re training to some rendition of the Welsh national anthem from sailors, also are located at the southern Japanese town, which won’t host any games throughout the tournament.
Warren Gatland’s team get their championship under way on Monday, September 23 against Georgia, also also Grand Slam winner Jones claims the reception they’ve received will benefit the players.
“I have never experienced anything like this in my career. It is astonishing and it has been very emotional,” said Jones, who played for Wales in 2004-2014.
“It has been like hosting a celebration. We got up and we said’oh, I hope folks will turn up and it goes well’.
“Then to find the temptations and then to see the gamers’ faces when they came out, it was just magic.
“It has surpassed our expectations. It’s great since the guys are just one week out from our very first match, and also to get an experience like this brings it home how amazing an event it really is.
“It will give the gamers a huge lift. The dream was supposed to turn the town red and we’ve done that.”
Jones, who helped construct links between the Welsh Rugby Union and Kitakyushu, included:”If you look back to things in your career, setting this has been magnificent.
“Seeing the players when they arrived in the welcome party the other night, and watching their faces here, they didn’t understand it.
“They have not seen anything like this and they’ll remember it forever. I know we’ll be back and long may it last.”