Jamie Joseph names Japan squad for England and France tests

Jamie Joseph names Japan squad for England and France tests

Japan Head Coach Jamie Joseph has announced the 40-member Squad for the upcoming Autumn Nations Series.

The squad left Japan on Wednesday and will face the likes of England and France in the final two test matches of the year. 


Comprising 22 forwards and 18 backs, the squad brings together a solid mix of youth and experience, as the Brave Blossoms enter their final 10 months of preparations, ahead of their first match at next year’s Rugby World Cup in France. Captained by 31-cap Atsushi Sakate, the most capped player in the squad is 76-cap Michael Leitch.

The forwards bring together solid test match experience with an average of 14.3 caps per player. Rugby World Cup 2019 veterans, 43-cap Keita Inagaki, 23-cap Kazuki Himeno and 20-cap Wimmpie van der Walt are included in a group that also includes 12 players with 10 caps or less.

The backs bring together a playing group with slightly less experience, with an average of 11.8 caps per player. Kotaro Matsushima, with 45 caps, is the squad’s most capped back. He is joined by the experienced, 31-cap Ryoto Nakamura, 28-cap Yutaka Nagare and 25-cap Ryohei Yamanaka, while 12 of the 18 backs have 10 test caps or less, including uncapped Hayata Nakao.    


Commenting on the squad selection, National Team Director, Yuichiro Fuji said:

‘Following our three matches against Australia A, we identified issues and areas that needed improvement. We were then able to challenge the All Blacks in Tokyo, pushing them all the way, right to the final whistle. While the result was disappointing, the players fought bravely and showed their skills. We are now aiming to reach a higher level in Europe against England and France, growing in strength and building even closer bonds amongst the group as we prepare for next year’s World Cup.”


TEAM LIST

Position Name Club School Height Weight DOB Caps
PR Keita INAGAKI SAITAMA Panasonic WILD KNIGHTS Kanto Gakuin Univ. 186 116 1990/6/2 43
PR Yusuke KIZU TOYOTA VERBLITZ Tenri Univ. 178 112 1995/12/2 5
PR Craig MILLAR SAITAMA Panasonic WILD KNIGHTS Univ. of Otago 186 116 1990/10/29 7
PR Jiwon GU KOBELCO KOBE STEELERS Takushoku Univ. 184 122 1994/7/20 19
PR Shuhei TAKEUCHI URAYASU D-Rocks Kyushu Kyoritsu Univ. 183 115 1997/12/9 2
PR Shogo MIURA TOYOTA VERBLITZ Tokai Univ. 180 113 1995/6/8 9
HO Atsushi SAKATE SAITAMA Panasonic WILD KNIGHTS Teikyo Univ. 180 104 1993/6/21 31
HO Takeshi HINO SHIZUOKA BlueRevs Doshisha Univ. 172 100 1990/1/20 5
HO Kosuke HORIKOSHI TOKYO SUNTORY SUNGOLIATH Teikyo Univ. 175 100 1995/6/2 5
LO Daichi AKIYAMA TOYOTA VERBLITZ Teikyo Univ. 192 110 1996/11/14 1
LO Wimpie VAN DER WALT URAYASU D-Rocks Nelspruit HS 188 112 1989/1/6 20
LO Yuya ODO SHIZUOKA BlueRevs Ritsumeikan Univ. 187 104 1990/3/9 5
LO Naohiro KOTAKI KOBELCO KOBE STEELERS Teikyo Univ. 194 114 1992/6/13 11
LO Jack CORNELSEN SAITAMA Panasonic WILD KNIGHTS Univ. of Queensland 195 110 1994/10/13 10
LO Warner DEARNS TOSHIBA BRAVE LUPUS TOKYO Ryutsu KeizaiUniv. KASHIWA High School 201 117 2002/4/11 5
FL Kanji SHIMOKAWA TOKYO SUNTORY SUNGOLIATH Waseda Univ. 188 105 1999/1/17 1
FL Pieter LABUSCHAGNE Kubota Spears Funabashi TOKYO-BAY Univ. of the Free State 189 106 1989/1/11 13
FL Masato FURUKAWA TOYOTA VERBLITZ Ritsumeikan Univ. 179 95 1996/12/6 3
FL Michael LEITCH TOSHIBA BRAVE LUPUS TOKYO Tokai Univ. 189 113 1988/10/7 76
No.8 Tevita TATAFU TOKYO SUNTORY SUNGOLIATH Tokai Univ. 183 124 1996/1/2 13
No.8 Kazuki HIMENO TOYOTA VERBLITZ Teikyo Univ. 187 108 1994/7/27 23
No.8 Faulua MAKISI Kubota Spears Funabashi TOKYO-BAY Tenri Univ. 187 112 1997/1/20 5
SH Kaito SHIGENO TOYOTA VERBLITZ Daito Bunka Univ. 170 77 1990/11/21 16
SH Naoto SAITO TOKYO SUNTORY SUNGOLIATH Waseda Univ. 165 73 1997/8/26 9
SH Yutaka NAGARE TOKYO SUNTORY SUNGOLIATH Teikyo Univ. 166 75 1992/9/4 28
SO Hayata NAKAO TOSHIBA BRAVE LUPUS TOKYO Kagoshima Univ. 176 86 1995/1/20 0
SO Takuya YAMASAWA SAITAMA Panasonic WILD KNIGHTS Tsukuba Univ. 176 84 1994/9/21 5
SO Seungsin LEE KOBELCO KOBE STEELERS Osaka Korean HS 176 85 2001/1/13 4
CTB Yusuke KAJIMURA YOKOHAMA CANON EAGLES Meiji Univ. 181 95 1995/9/13 2
CTB Shane GATES URAYASU D-Rocks Muir College Boys’ HS 183 95 1992/9/27 4
CTB Shogo NAKANO TOKYO SUNTORY SUNGOLIATH Waseda Univ. 186 98 1997/6/11 5
CTB Ryoto NAKAMURA TOKYO SUNTORY SUNGOLIATH Teikyo Univ. 182 92 1991/6/3 31
CTB Dylan RILEY SAITAMA Panasonic WILD KNIGHTS Bond Univ. 187 102 1997/5/2 8
WTB Gerhard Van Den HEEVER Kubota Spears Funabashi TOKYO-BAY Univ. of Pretoria 192 102 1989/4/13 4
WTB Siosaia FIFITA HANAZONO KINTETSU LINERS Tenri Univ. 187 105 1998/12/20 10
WTB Koga NEZUKA Kubota Spears Funabashi TOKYO-BAY Hosei Univ. 173 82 1998/9/15 1
WTB Kotaro MATSUSHIMA TOKYO SUNTORY SUNGOLIATH Toin Gakuen HS 178 87 1993/2/26 45
FB Ryuji NOGUCHI SAITAMA Panasonic WILD KNIGHTS Tokai Univ. 177 83 1995/7/15 14
FB Taira MAIN RICOH BlackRams Tokyo Gose Industrial HS 178 89 2000/9/5 1
FB Ryohei YAMANAKA KOBELCO KOBE STEELERS Waseda Univ. 188 98 1988/6/22 25

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