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Field of (Rugby) dreams: Player-themed rice fields go the distance for World Cup

Recreations of three Japan rugby players are seen stretched across fields in Gyoda, Saitama Prefecture, on July 18, 2019. (Mainichi/Tatsuya Fujii)

GYODA, Saitama -- Ahead of the Rugby World Cup 2019 in Japan set to start in September, several fields sporting designs depicting some of the national team's stars have been attracting attention.

Using four kinds of rice plants, local volunteers created lush visages of athletes, from left, Kazuki Himeno, Michael Leitch and Fumiaki Tanaka, across some 2.8 hectares of fields.

The display can be seen in all its glory from an observation deck some 50 meters high at the neighboring Kodai Hasu no Sato park. The fields are set to be on show presumably until around mid-August.

Visitors expressed their surprise with the display, saying, "It's on such a huge scale, and the athletes' faces look accurate too."

(Japanese original by Tatsuya Fujii, Photo Group)

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