Al Khor, Qatar – Japanese football fans did something unexpectedly classy at the end of the inaugural match of the Fifa World Cup 2002 at Doha's Al Bayt Stadium.
In a video that's recently making the rounds on social media, spectators from the island nation were seen picking up all the trash and leaving the stadium spick and span after the opening match between Ecuador and host Qatar on Sunday.
Originally shared by Qatari video creator Omar Al-Farooq, the video features him left in awe of the humility and discipline of the fans from the East Asian nation.
'It's not even their match!' Farooq exclaimed.
When the video creator asked why they were cleaning up one of them responded, "Japanese never leave rubbish behind. We respect the place," she said.
"We are not doing it for cameras," another fan, dressed in the jersey of Qatar, said.
Not just one or two people, but a large number of Japanese spectators volunteered in cleaning the seating area of the 68 000 plus capacity stadium.
They also picked up flags that were left on the ground by other spectators, and either put them on the stadium's chairs or took them with them.
A visibly touched Farooq was seen hugging some of the volunteers for their immensely kind deed.
The video moved a number of people across the world, including businessman Anand Mahindra. "They said they weren't doing it for the cameras, but I'm glad the cameras still spotted them. The values they're displaying are worthy of a global audience," he wrote on Twitter.
The inaugural match of the 2022 World Cup took place between host-nation Qatar and Ecuador, with the latter emerging victorious.
The multinational football event is taking place in the Middle East for the first time in history.
It is also the first time the World Cup is held outside its June-July window to avoid the harsh summer heat of Qatar.
Read the latest issue of IOL Travel digital magazine here.