World Rugby organisers have advised players competing at the Japan 2019 Rugby World Cup, as well as supporters, to cover up any tattoos in public to avoid causing offence, with markings easily mistaken to be associated with Yakuza, a Japanese mafia.
There is also an education programme put in place by the organisers, which gives information about appropriate footwear to wear indoor and outdoors.
Head of the Rugby World Cup Alan Gilpin says the Japanese people will be aware that there will be players not accustomed to Japan's culture.
"We will make (Japanese) people aware around the facilities that players will use in the country that people with tattoos in a Rugby World Cup context are not part of the Yakuza, the Japanese mafia," said Gilpin.
"That's where the issue comes from. We have done a lot in the last year or so with the teams to get them to understand that.
"When we raised it with the teams a year or so ago we were probably expecting a frustrated reaction from them but there hasn't been at all. That is a great tribute to the sport itself and to the rugby players themselves."
Gilpin also said players with tattoos are expected to cover up by wearing a vest when swimming in a public pool.
"They all also buy into the idea of putting on a rash-vest in the pool or in a gym as they want to respect the Japanese culture. If they are using a public pool they will have to cover up.
"Players will also have to wear different trainers indoors and outdoors. It will all be self-policing. We won't force any teams to cover up but they will want to because they want to be seen to be respecting the culture.
"Whether it is Scotland, Ireland, Wales or Italy, who have all been there recently, they all get it, they really do."
Beauden Barrett celebrates with Aaron Smith.
The Rugby World Cup begins on September 20 in 2019 with the opening match to be played between the host nation Japan and Russia at Tokyo Stadium.
Dejected All Blacks Rieko Ioane and TJ Perenara seen after their team's loss during the 2018 Rugby Championship between All Blacks vs South Africa at Westpac Stadium in Wellington.
Sonny Bill Williams has called in the help of his daughters, Aisha and Imman, to promote his return to the boxing ring in December, with the star posting a hilarious Rocky Balboa inspired training video on social media today.
The cross-code star will fight Australian millionaire Stu Laundy on December 1, in a charity event to fundraise money for the homeless in New Zealand and Australia.
The 33-year-old All Black posted on his Instagram account today a video of him squatting with one daughter on his arm and another on his shoulders.
He also performs sit-ups while feeding his kids in the video.
"I'm back in the ring Dec 1st - Fighting for those who happen to be a bit down on their luck and are homeless in Aotearoa and Australia. It's an honour to be part of this special event ❤️," posted Williams.
He's in line to make his Test rugby return against the Pumas in Argentina next Sunday, after three months out following a shoulder injury against France.
The cross-code star is set to step back into the ring in December in a charity event for the homeless.
Source: Instagram/ sonnybillwilliams
French rugby skipper and midfielder Mathieu Bastareaud has been suspended for five weeks after his brutal attack on a rival in a Top 14 match in Toulon last week.
The French disciplinary committee handed the Toulon centre a five-match ban, after he was sent off for a swinging forearm attack on Castres lock Christophe Samson while he was lying prone on the ground.
Bastareaud was initially handed a six week ban for the foul play and was given an extra week due to his poor disciplinary record.
But because the 30-year-old pleaded guilty and showed remorse after his attack he had his suspension reduced by two weeks.
He will miss five games for Toulon but will be available for France's Test matches against South Africa, Argentina and Fiji in November.
Bastareaud attacked Castres lock Christophe Samson with a swinging forearm while he was on the ground during a Top 14 match in Toulon.
Source: CANAL +