Last Sunday the Tokyo Gaijin were out at the Shuto League 10's Tournament, held every year in Shin-Urayasu, round the corner from Tokyo Disneyland. The Gaijin entered two teams this year with enough room for just a few on the bench for each team, though due to specialized skillsets, several players actually went out on behalf of both teams. The below is a mail from TGRFC Manager, Joffa Harris, to the boys on Monday that includes a big thanks to Jesse Takahashi, our organizer without whom we would be in the wilderness.
The Southern Hemisphere won 3 games, lost 1 and had a draw in the preliminary stages and I believe that the Northern Hemisphere team won 1, had 2 draws and lost 2.
It was a bit disappointing that more guys didn't show but this also enabled everyone to get plenty of game time as the injuries started to mount with the 'North' losing their 'Gun' Toby Gallagher in the first match to a hamstring strain and then Andy Ballard, Dave Kelver & Richard O`Shea pulling out with various injuries over the next few matches. Also Murray Clarke, filling in for the North after being out of action since the start of April, and Takashi Narita, back from 9 months out, had to leave early.
The South lost their first match in the Finals stage to a drop-goal going down 3v0. The Northern side actually went one match further due to 2 tries from 'Southern' players, as they ended up with only half a team
due to injuries and the early departures. This included a 60 metre cracker from Ikuo Fukuda. My choice for player of the day would have to go to Rory Brown followed closely by Matt Downer. As Rory mentioned previously, Blake filled in wherever he was needed..... but a hooker he is not, losing 4 scrums on the trot. Hard to win with no ball. Apart from that he did a great job in all positions throughout the day. That was the game we got beat by a field goal, which was kicked to a round of hearty boos. Tommy Nasuno was also one to excel, playing 8 or 9 games.
The club also welcomed two handy players in Aaron Nutsford from New Zealand (but don't hold that against him!) and Warren Adamson from South Africa. Welcome to the Club guys! Warren made a 3 hour trip from Numazu to be there and is willing to do that all the time so it is refreshing to have someone with such commitment. To those guys who complain about times, travel distances and cost... tell your story to
It was also good to welcome back Takashi Narita who should be back in the fold come September. Also Daisuke Ikegami has joined the team full time and shows a lot of promise.
As the Summer heats up we will be winding things down. The Sugadaira 10`s this weekend will be the last game before September. There is talk of a Touch Tournament & a BBQ at our usual training place later this month but nothing has been confirmed. I guess it depends on interest as it is not worth certain peoples` effort if it is not supported.
The Shuto League usually starts in the first week of September so expect a call to arms in late August with possibly two training runs over the last two weekends of August. Try to keep fit as it will be bloody hot at the end of August and I am sure Sir Ballard has some intense fitness sessions planned.
Thanks to the ladies that came along and supported us on Sunday and also to Caro. Thanks to Blake for the esky (cooler box) and ice and Mauro for bringing along the tent. And a big THANKS to Jesse Takahashi for doing the Tent Duties (scoring etc). I am sure it must have been pure pleasure sitting alongside the officials and all those lovely referees.
Actually, thanks Jesse for all the backroom work you have done over the Spring season. That's what allows us all to play. Cheers mate!