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A JR Tokaido Shinkansen train made an unscheduled stop at Shizuoka Station on Tuesday night to pick up a group of stranded German soccer fans seeking to return to Tokyo after watching a World Cup match between Germany and Cameroon at Shizuoka Ecopa Stadium.

JR Tokai officials said the roughly dozen or so fans were stranded as they had boarded the wrong bullet train at Kakegawa Station. The train had made its final stop at Shizuoka Station.

“We knew there would be confusion with so many foreign visitors around,” said a JR Tokai spokesman.

According to JR officials, Shizuoka Station was not a scheduled stop for the special late-night shinkansen that picked up the German visitors.

JR Tokai provided the late-night bullet trains from Kakegawa to Tokyo and to Nagoya on Tuesday as a special service for the Germany-Cameroon match.

Low ridership

NAGOYA (Kyodo) The number of people who boarded special late-night bullet trains Tuesday following a Germany-Cameroon World Cup match at Shizuoka Ecopa Stadium was lower than expected, officials of Central Japan Railway Co. said Wednesday.

Six bullet trains left Kakegawa in Shizuoka Prefecture for Tokyo and two for Nagoya between 11:30 p.m. Tuesday and 12:40 a.m. Wednesday.

Some 7,500 people boarded the trains, well below the expected 11,000. All the trains arrived at their destinations before 2 a.m.

While the occupancy rate on the first train to Nagoya stood at 140 percent, the last train to Tokyo carried only 30 passengers.

It is the first time that JR Tokai has run bullet trains after midnight since the 1970 Osaka International Exposition.

There are usually no scheduled services between midnight and 6 a.m. due to noise concerns.

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