Members of the Tokyo Gaijin RFC, their wives, girlfriends, helpers, friends and children gathered at The Beer Station in Garden Place, Ebisu, for their Christmas Party and Annual Awards night. 63 guests and 5 kids in all kept the staff quite busy all evening in an All-you-can-drink-and-eat feastathon. With the men all wearing suits and the ladies looking very elegantly attired it was hard to believe this was a rugby function. The Gaijin had won 7, lost 2 and drawn 1 in the Leagues they were participants in throughout 2007. Funnily enough, they had lost all 4 ‘Friendlies’ they played through the year. Perhaps it`s a case of a relaxed mindset or that ‘newer’ members of the squad are often given more game time in these ‘practice’ games. There were mixed results at the Sugadaira 10`s, The Shuto League 10`s and The Manila 10`s. Shall we just say that Rugby was the winner and the boys enjoyed these relatively laid back tournaments more for the festive atmosphere.
Captain Alaister Nimmo and Manager Joffa Harris opened proceedings with a run-down of the year and then presented players with awards. Captain Al had this to say about the year : Winning the Shuto League (not quite in the bag yet as we need to turn up to the match at the start of next year) has been a fantastic achievement. We played well in an undefeated run and it was great to see so many Gaijin players selected for the Shuto League representative side.
Last weekend (2nd December) in Rugby, The Tokyo Gaijin (TGRFC) met a fierce Keiyo Liners team(a combination of Chiba Barbarians - who have always been hard, and Akanegahama)in Chiba. Despite the long journey the Gaijin talked and kept hopes alive about remaining unbeaten since the Summer break in League Games, even with out almost 10 of their usual starters. 7 men were lost to the Shuto Select Side in their annual game against the Tama Select Side for the New Zealand Embassy Cup. A few more were out taking the Japanese Proficiency test. Then there was the usual few out with work commitments or injuries. Still the mood was upbeat.
Warm ups commenced followed by some quick line out practices for the forwards, and intricately worked backs' moves. It could not be helped to note that something was not quite right.
# The Tokyo Gaijin RFC played two quarters against the ‘Bets of the Rest’ from the Shuto League. Six players from the squad were chosen to go to the next selection game: Tyler Rumsey, Will Thompson, Garret Washington, Apisai Bati, Tucker McEwen and Riki Pitter. Congratulations to these players.
# While the TGRFC were outplayed in the game and the forwards received a shellacking from captain Al Nimmo there were 5 regular forwards missing. Rob ‘10 minute’Poulton was the only front rower available so Gaz Dalrymple and Erin Hughes bravely stepped up to fill the void. Good job fellas!
# Dave Kelver , who was restricted to sideline duties during the game due to a back complaint, was very critical of the forwards efforts and can`t wait to get back on the field next week to show how it`s done.