Sunday the 7th of March dawned frigid and wet, and with no sign of improvement forecast, the Gaijin realized that later in the day, they would not only be battling one of their toughest rivals in YCAC, but in all likelihood, be battling the elements as well.
Given all the rain of the previous 24 hours, any grass field would surely have been submerged and been cause for a cancellation, but arriving at the ground around 12pm, we found YCAC's astro turf surface to be still in good nick despite the persistent precipitation.
The battle commenced at 1:45pm, with 30 minute halves being announced at the toss by the YCAC captain just prior to kickoff. What ensued was a hard-fought, fair fight, which was ultimately won by the might of the YCAC forward pack. Playing perfect 10 man, wet weather rugby, the YCAC forwards ground down the Gaijin and made good use of the booming boot of their number 10. The YCAC, with the wind at their backs, took an early lead converting two of their three early penalties for ruck infringements. Although the Gaijin took the lead briefly after scoring a converted try to make the score 7-6, chances to attack were as rare as hen's teeth, and most of the game was spent trying to halt the YCAC forward rumbles. YCAC crashed over from a forward rumble to take the lead back before halftime (11-7).
The Tokyo Gaijin gathered out at Shin Shibamata Rugby Ground (a.k.a Edogawa No.3) to play Doronco RFC in a 'friendly' game and to seek atonement for the shellacking they received the week before at the hands of the All France Rugby Club. Two new members in Stephen Dods and Alan Haines, both in their mid 40's were to increase the average age of the club quite markedly.
“The Voice of Rugby” (Bill McLaren) might have sadly passed away a couple of weeks ago, but the Tokyo Gaijin have a few voices of rugby of their own... and as usual they were very active on Sunday the 31st of January, 2010, as they met NSC Ruggers. This was a team with which the Gaijin have had a bitter history. 20th of May 2007 (the last time the two teams met) is a day that will live in infamy, and saw the NSC Ruggers knock the TGRFC out of the Tokyo Cup in what was a well fought but disappointing game, 25 points to 21. On a better surface and more favourable conditions, the TGRFC met again with the NSC Ruggers in a friendly at the Hino Sports Grounds.