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Toyota Stadium removes name sign for Rugby World Cup sponsor

This photo taken in November 2018 shows City of Toyota Stadium. (Kyodo)

TOKYO (Kyodo) -- A stadium hosting games for the Rugby World Cup in the central Japanese city of Toyota has removed its name sign in consideration of one of the event's main sponsors, British carmaker Jaguar Land Rover Ltd., a city official said Monday.

    The Toyota Stadium sign set up at the entrance was removed on Sept. 3 at the request of RWC organizer World Rugby, which feared it may be taken as promoting Toyota Motor Corp. although the facility is a city property, the official said.

    The city, where Toyota Motor is headquartered, had agreed to call the stadium "City of Toyota Stadium" during the World Cup.

    "We understand (the request from) World Rugby," said the official. "We see it as an opportunity to make it known that Toyota is the name of a city."

    The name plate will be put back in place after all the games in the stadium end on Oct. 12. Eight teams including Japan, New Zealand and South Africa will play in the stadium.

    The city changed its name from Koromo to Toyota in 1959 following the development of the auto industry in the region.

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