The Tokyo Gaijin RFC were shown what it feels like to be beaten by bigger men and a more powerful scrum when they battled out their 4th round Shuto League match against Crusaders RFC at Omiya Kenpo Ground way out in Saitama. The TGRFC traditionally have a strong scrum and rarely get beaten and even pushed the bigger Crusaders pack back last year but not this time. They would also have felt how many Japanese teams usually feel when they play the Gaijin as they were completely out-weighed and eclipsed in size with the Crusaders pack containing 3 forwards around the two metre mark.
To make matters worse for the Gaijin they were missing many of their own big men, mostly due to work commitments. A list containing Baz Lobendahn, Nik Pavesic, Gorka Gerediaga (all work), Stanley Henry (returned to Australia), Chris Musgrave (Flu), Jeremy Burns (work), and Alexander Auldy (concussion) is a big list of big men. Neveretheless, the Gaijin were aiming to continue their winning streak from three games to four, and their dominance over the Crusaders which goes back 8 years, and had complete faith in their squad. Another surprise came when the Gaijin players realised that the Crusaders also had a handy 'ring-in' with semi-pro player Keita Sekimoto providing them with blinding speed and 3 tries - close to the eventual difference in points between the two sides. (He has played Rugby League with the Gaijin in a 9's game).
The Tokyo Gaijin RFC were aiming to keep up their winning run in the third round of the Shuto League against Kichioji Wild Turkeys at Katsushika Sogo Sports Center and send off Stanley Henry with a victory in his final game before heading back to Australia (he's actually a KIWI though). Not only did the victory follow but Henry scored two tries to add to his memories of Japan.
The Tokyo Gaijin RFC have bumbled their way to a close 24 v 17 win over All JIn Jan RFC (AJJ) in their second round Shuto League match at Inagi Athletics Field.. The game was played in fairly hot and humid conditions more suggestive of mid-August rather than the beginning of October and this had the players struggling to keep up at times. The referee also failed to promote a flowing game with numerous puzzling decisions for both sides.
After a tough but victorious warmup last weekend the Tokyo Gaijin RFC began their 2016 Shuto League campaign with a crushing 48 v 0 win over Olivers RFC. Olivers RFC played well but could not crack the blue defensive wall of the Gaijin. The Gaijin picked up all the bonus points on offer in the Shuto League gaining three bonus points (1 for four tries or more, 1 for holding the opposition to zero, and one for finishing more than three tries in front) as well as the four points for the victory to go to the top of the Shuto League ladder.