Role reversal?

23 06 2008

For a very long time, players from overseas have come to Japan to finish out their rugby careers.
The various sides in Top League rugby here in Japan are littered with players from Australia, New Zealand, the British Isles, South Africa, and the Pacific Islands.

Kosuke Endo has his sights set on reversing the trend.
Endo is headed to New Zealand, to play for perhaps the strongest side in club rugby, Canterbury. Endo will don the red & black in the Air New Zealand Cup.
Japan’s coach John Kirwan was pleased for Endo, and suggested that if he can play well enough, he might even get a chance in the Super 14 squad – The Crusaders.

It’s a huge chance, and one that Japan’s Top League Rugby chiefs recognise as being important – not just to Endo but to Japanese rugby players in general. To that end, they have changed a rule demanding that to play Top League, all players had to be in Japan in August. Endo has been told he can return to Toyota Verblitz, even if Canterbury reaches October 20th’s Cup final.

It’s not the first time Endo’s played club rugby overseas – the 27 year old played in Australia for Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs.

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3 responses

24 06 2008
bob

Very Interesting – what position does he play, Don?

24 06 2008
withmalice

He’s a winger Bob… pretty strong too.

24 06 2008
bob

I’ll watch his progress with interest. Seems like every NZ rugby player is going to Europe at the moment – maybe our Air New Zealand Cup will be full of overseas players in the next few years!

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