by The Ghost Writer It was supposed to rain, but thankfully it didn’t. We knew we were going to be short, so we had organised three players from Koryo RFC to join us at Misato Ground. As has been a little too usual of late, we arrived at the meeting point desperate for people to arrive…. With a still-injured Sean Gibson arriving to be our ‘touchy’, Aiko as Safety Assistant, and Megumi coming back for her second game as sideline supporter, we were ready to go with 16 players by the kickoff, against a ‘new’ team, who nobody could remember the Cru having played before. It was a bit of a tussle to begin with but, 17 minutes in, the opposition scored a converted try. We followed that up 3 minutes later with an unconverted try from Tsuyoshi, who was playing on the wing. However, all thoughts of running away with the game ended when, 2 minutes later, the opposition struck back with another try. For the next 10 minutes, both teams tried to add to their scores but were beaten by the half-time whistle. Score 5 – 12 to them. The second half saw the ChibaBarbarians start to run away with it, scoring a try 9 minutes in and again on the 24 minute mark. Not having a bench to turn to was really taking its toll on an understrength Cru. However, a hallmark of all Cru games being “Never say die!”, ‘Johnny-on-the-spot’ Tooley scored from a kick and chase by Myonjun (one of our friendly Koryo RFC ringers) and an opposition fumble over the line to make the final score a less embarrassing 12 – 24 to the opposition after Evan H had converted. According to all reports, it was Tooley’s first try since coming out of retirement 2 and a half seasons ago! Our vote for their MVP went to their No 12 – Mr Ishibashi, and theirs went to our No. 10 travis Dixon. 321s were : Roy McGrath – 5 pts, Alex Howard – 4 pts, Travis Dixon – 3 pts, Alex Herrera – 2 pts, Myonjun Kin – 1 pt. The aftermatch function was held in the downstairs Ojisan bar near Matsudo Station with 15 present, including 2 WAGS, and 1 potential new assistant manager.