by Aaron Angelo

On Sunday, the Crusaders convened at Kasai Rinkai Koen. The occasion? The Edogawa 7s Rugby tournament. After discovering we had a few no-shows, the Cru saddled up for an exciting day of 7s. The tournament draw was haphazard to say the least, but done nonetheless. The draw and lineup were as follows:

Forwards:
Connor Bottrell
Nico Maurin
Aaron Pokluda
Brendan Gallagher
Will Germann
Matt Sparrow
Rinta Fujino
Backs
Suguru Matsumoto
Tristan Clarke
Hugo Mestres
Nestor Gonzalez
Tomohito Arakawa
Staff
Sean Gibson
Kenn kurihara
Hiro Mori

MATCHES

10:00 v. Bridgestone RFC

11:20 v. Superman Donkey (Mix Team)

The boys saddled up, and received the ball in the first half against Bridgestone. It didn’t take long for Hugo and Tristan to link up for an opening try. The forwards gave no quarter, destroying the Bridgestone scrum at almost every opportunity. A quick offload from Nestor put Suguru into space, allowing the French connection to put up more points. After a hard tussle, the boys emerged successful 12-7 against the red tire guys.

To our surprise, we found that our next match was changed. Away went the expectation of killing the Supermen, and soon we found ourselves staring down the barrel of NTT Hibiya’s proverbial gun. Kick off was deep and high, however Tristan decided to run it back for an opening try. A subsequent one followed via a Tomo touch line offload to Hugo. Then came the penalties. At first the lads had to contend with a few off feet and being in from the side, but NTT took advantage and pressed the attack. Within minutes, they had a converted try on the board (much to sidelines dismay). A dubious high tackle and HIA stoppage put one in the bin and a Hibiya scrum on the Cru 22m. A smashing tackle by Connor forced NTT wide, however they did manage to score and take the game 12-10. And just like that, the Cru were dead in the water.

The fun did not stop however. Still keen to get some matches in, the boys assisted the rather hard done Tokyo Bay team and played against MS Ruggers. In an instant, the Tokyo Bay Babaas were born. Hugo, Aaron, Connor, Rinta, Tomo, and Tristan suited up in the red and white and took to the pitch. MS Ruggers cut through the defensive line rather quickly, notching up a try with a quick conversion thereafter. Tristan, not to be outdone, returned the kickoff for a quick try. Conversion missed, but the next kickoff yielded more fruit as Rinta took MS’s center clean off his feet for a turnover. A botched lineout proved disastrous for the lads though, as MS ran it in for an unconverted try. Shohei, one of Tokyo Bay’s stalwarts, thanked the lads for their aid in the time of need. With a group picture and smiles all around, the Cru departed for the afters in Hibiya.

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