Many commentators and sports fans agreed that the pulsating encounter, which went down to the last play, was the best PR the Rugby World Cup organisers could have hoped for:
Well Japan have just given rugby the best PR boost so far. Amazing statement by the next tournament's hosts— Fred de Fossard (@FdeFossard) September 19, 2015
A brilliant performance by Japan, simple as that. My heart still racing after that last few minutes. World Cups are great & no one is safe.— Jonny Wilkinson (@JonnyWilkinson) September 19, 2015
Japan vs South Africa; perhaps the most exciting rugby match I've ever seen. Incredible. Amazing. Watch it even if you don't like the game..— tom bradby (@tombradby) September 19, 2015
The match set Twitter alight, with over 330,000 tweets during the game:
However, many household Japanese brands including Toyota, Sony and Honda missed out on the social conversation by opting to stay silent.
Japanese firm Mitsubishi found itself in an awkward position as a sponsor of South Africa.
Brands with Japanese roots or influences that did get involved in the celebrations included Superdry, YoSushi! and Sticks’n’Sushi.
Guinness and official Rugby World Cup sponsors including Land Rover and Mastercard also capitalised on the buzz:
The South African team took the loss on the chin, but fans back at home are unlikely to be so welcoming if their poor run continues:
Happy fans welcome back the plucky South African team after their brave performance against Japan. pic.twitter.com/FUMuhwzeCu— Sean Kemp (@Sean_Kemp) September 19, 2015