By Seth Robson When the historians sit down to write the chronicles of the Tokyo Crusaders they will probably look back on last weekend’s game against Matsudo RFC and say: “That was a particularly significant match!” Recalling the contest, Stewart Henwood had this to say: “It rained… it was a really nice pitch. Brandon R (aka Ricky) scored a double. Galdric and Steve both scored on debut for the Cru. The opposition put on some pitch-side beers for an after-match. The penalty count against us is still way too high…” Nice one Stew! You summed it all up in a few simple sentences. However, the historians will likely want to know a bit more than that mate. There may be some important detail that they will need to explain exactly how monumental this match was. Well, historians, for the record: there were no schoolgirls in short skirts. If anyone else claims that they saw them, they are full of shit. That’s just a fantasy that was playing out in Tooley’s head (along with the ones about the naughty nurse and the nun who is also a hooker) in the weeks and months leading up to this fixture. It would be historically accurate to say that schoolgirls did attend (and listened intently as Sean Gibson regaled them with tales of his own high-school days in the ‘80s) but they were both very modestly attired. It’s also a fact that there was rain. However it had little impact on the pitch because it was a “really nice” Astro-turf one at Senshu Daigaku Matsudo Koko. For the record, the 30 True Men who tramped onto the field didn’t let the schoolgirls down. The Cru’s much larger forward pack were dominant with strong runs from prop Yuuki Adachi putting Matsudo on the back foot throughout the match. Takushi “Tako” Hayashi, filling in for Evan “AWOL” Hitchman at halfback seemed to have eight arms as he plucked the ball from the back of scrums and rucks to unleash a potent backline. First to cross for the Cru was Captain America – Kyle Cotton – who made the defense look like a troop of demented snow monkeys trying to break into a 7-11 as he rampaged his way to a place that he calls “the end zone.” Moments later Brandon Rogers picked up a nicely weighted kick from Travis “Ned Kelly” Dixon and sprinted in for another try. And then Nathan McCutcheon delighted the schoolgirls with his own “touchdown.” Before the match someone had remarked that it would be wonderful if the Cru could keep the opposition scoreless but that dream was dashed when Matsudo struck back with their own try. Brushing aside his disappointment at the faux pas fired-up Frenchman Galdric Porta added his own piece of je ne sais quoi to make it 26-7 at the break. The second half went the same way as the first. Brandon added a second try before Steve Howden scored his first for the Cru. Matsudo got another back before Travis found himself in possession a few feet from the line. Snarling like a rabid Tanuki he bashed his way over make it a 47-14 win for the Cru. The players jogged off the field to find a table laden with cold Asahi courtesy of our generous hosts– the perfect reward for a job well-done. On a sad note, Chris “Chandaliers” Eckstrom lost one of his diamond earrings in the shower afterwards. If any historians read this and know any archaeologists I’d recommend digging around the ruins of the old high school and looking for something shiny. 1979345_819282074767067_217504284_o

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