OBIRA, Hokkaido -- A locally caught octopus here correctly "predicted" the results of all Japan's group stage World Cup games but has since been sent to market, prompting possible concerns about Japan's next knockout game against Belgium.
Fisherman Kimio Abe, 51, named an octopus caught on June 19 Ra-bi-o, a play on the town's name. Abe placed Rabio in a plastic pool containing three boxes, representing Japan, its opponent and a draw. The octopus made its prediction by moving toward one of the boxes. Rabio tipped Japan to win against Colombia, draw with Senegal and lose to Poland, which all proved accurate.
A smiling Abe commented, "I'm glad that all the forecasts turned out correct and Japan moved on to the knockout stage." However, Rabio has since been sent to the market so Abe will use another octopus to predict the result of Japan's game against Belgium. "I hope Rabio's successor will accurately tip the results of all games and Japan will win the World Cup."
(Japanese original by Hiroto Watanabe, Hokkaido News Department)