This is the column where you find out what is happening with your team. Read on to find out about the comings and goings from your team, the rumours and innuendo, with a few sprinkles of real news to top it off.
Odds and Ends
* On the 6th of October, Yoshihiro and Satoko Sato became the proud parents of a baby girl named Yoz.
* On the 9th of October, the Tokyo Gaijin RFC celebrated 20 years since their inception with a party at the place it all began - Andy's Bar (Shin Hi no Moto) in Yurakucho. It was good to hear some of the old tales from some of the Gaijin originals in Andy, Christian, Shinpei, Uehara and Hide. Non-playing but long time Gaijin supporter Yoda was also there reminiscing about the old Hong Kong tours. It was very interesting to hear how Andy Lunt would cruise along the streets of Roppongi on a Sunday morning in the Fish van picking up guys from street corners before heading out to the game. I guess the alcohol fumes in the fish van outsmelled the smell of fish. Of course in those days no-one had e-mail.
* On Thursday 3rd of November 5 Gaijin members (Yamagen, Apisai Bati, Joffa Harris, Gaz Dalrymple and Yoshihiro Sato) helped the Phoenix RFC Old Boys Team (Over 35's) beat the Mandara/Higurashi Old Boys Team 38 v 22. The victory was all the more impressive considering that the latter team had not been defeated in 4 years.Tokyo Gaijin RFC player, Apisai Bati, scored 4 tries on the day in a very impressive display.
Comings and Goings
It has been a busy couple of months for the Gaijin with a few guys leaving and quite a few newcomers.
* Tommy Nasuno headed back to England mid September to continue his studies. I guess we'll be seeing him in his summer break next year. Study hard Tommy and come back and join us for good!
* On September 26th, Alan Haines, our oldest team member, was another to head back to England. After two years of being jobless and getting hassled domestically he joins his son, who is going to boarding school in England. His wife and daughter are staying put for now. Apparently he'll be back at Christmas time for a short visit. We'll miss his mateship and willingness to help out the team wherever possible.
* Australian utility back, Tristan O'Connor also left these shores on September 22nd. He has relocated to Thailand, where he will continue the English teaching caper for now, but is hoping to get into another line of work. With the recent floods in Thailand it has been rumoured that he has been swimming to work.
* Spanish prop & sometime loose forward Ismael Suarez returned to Spain after a short study stay in Japan.
We wish all these guys the best in their chosen futures and hope to see them all again soon!
* We have welcomed another Fijian to our 'Party Hard' community in Epi Tabulawaki. He joins Apisai Bati, Joe Nawaquavanua, and the returning Mosese Rarsesa, who decided to rejoin the Gaijin from the Dark Side (read YCAC).
* Englishman Sam Deroeck also joined the team in late August and has impressed all with his passion and pace. He already has a swag of tries to his name. Problem is he lives a few prefectures away so he has to pick and choose which weekends he can come and play. More the pity for the team.
* Another Englishman, David Middleditch, also an outside back or fullback, joined in late September. Apparently he is also an able cricketer.
* Two Canadian brothers, Rod and Stuart McDonald, joined the team in October. Rod is a centre while Stuart usually plays wing or halfback. Unfortunately the boys are only here 'til Christmas. Rod has already highly impressed with 4 tries in 2 games.
* Another new centre in Australian, Roy Touchee, 'Guested' in our last game and hopes to join the team full time in the new year. He has a strong background in Rugby League and Rugby Union having played for the Melbourne Storm Under 20's and the Harlequins Rugby Club in Melbourne.
* The on-again off-again relationship between Ikuo Fukuda and Daisuke Ikegami is back on!
* The Rugby World Cup took its toll on some of the members and their respective nations. Blake Walker was not able to watch the majority of All Blacks victories with team members due to extreme nervousness. He is said to be OK now they have finally broken the hoodoo.
* The Gaijin are on the lookout for anyone that can convert goals after a recent run of bad form by 'kickers' associated with the team. The last two games have produced 1/8 and 1/10 goalkicking percentages. That looks horrible!
* That Warren Adamson who suffered a broken leg earlier in the year may be looking to make a comeback within the coming months.....as a back. Now that's enough laughing!
* Who was the Gaijin utility who recently said 'But I'm good!" when told he would have to get in line if he wanted to play flanker due to the club's rather large list of capable flankers at the club at the moment.