The calendar year started with one last match to play in the Shuto League against Koganei. While we had already sewn up the 2007 Championship, we still wanted to close this one out and go undefeated if at all possible. We managed to fall asleep at that wheel on this day but it served as a great warm up for our match against cross-town rival YCAC the following week. We went down against YCAC by 8-14 but were heartened by the effort, with the referee missing two tries by the Gaijin that even - in the bar later on - our opposition admitted they were lucky to escape from.
In February and we played in the Champions League against the Championship winning teams of other Autumn season competitions around Tokyo. We won our first match (over Ichihara, Chiba League) 43-19 but lost our second 5-12 to the Blackeye's (Edogawa League) who pulled it out with a try in the dying stages.
Ending February we held the AGM where a new Captain (Murray Clarke) and Vice-Captain (Matthew Downer) were elected (Al Nimmo stepping down through work commitments), along with Co-Managers (Clarke and Erin Hughes) to assist Joffa Harris and Jesse Takahashi.
At the Shuto League Closing Ceremony Apisai Bati, our long serving Fijian center, was named MVP for the Shuto League and the following week we went up against the Japan National Deaf Representative Team known as the All-Quiet Typhoon, where we won in an enjoyable running game 48-19. Meanwhile in Manila, keeping up with tradition, we were well represented again as one of the most festive teams in the Manila 10's competition despite bowing out in the Plate Quarters as certain players had arrived to the game direct from the bar.
The Tokyo Gaijin continued their winning ways with a comprehensive 34 v 7 defeat of Idemitsu Oil RFC in an Ichihara League game.
With a training day arranged for the Shuto LeagAue Select team for the NZ Ambassadors Cup the Gaijin turned up to the beautifully manicured and green (rare in Tokyo!) Chiharadai Field way out in woop-woop Chiba missing 10 regular players (Justin ‘scoobie’Mynah, Rob Poulton, Kevin Rebay, Paulo de Berriozabal, Alaister Nimmo, Saki Naita, Joe Nawaqavanua, Apisai Bati, Amir Yassari, & Andy Ballard). The TGRFC Club still managed to get a decent squad together and it was a chance to give some of the ‘greener’ players a chance to shine. The team was welcoming back Dan Salter & Riki Pitter after long absences due to injury & sickness. Pitter was to join Hitoshi Chihara in an untried centre combination. Mauro Sauco was also returning to the Gaijin fold after 6 months working in China and making the odd guest appearance for the Beijing Devils RFC until injury reared its ugly head and forced him to take a 5 month rest from the game.