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Japan Tour Diary Entry One

Konichiwa! I’ve been chosen to give you all the insights into the HBHS 1st XV Japan Tour. I think it is a special honour as I was lucky enough to read the No.16 and No. 17 stories back in the day.

 

Anyway, let’s get started as I know you will all be keen to know what the brothers have been up to.

 

Kyoto was a blast. We got stay with some mean Japanese families and try some really different food. Some of us got taken to a bathhouse where you had to get naked and sit in a big pool. Some of us did Karaoke Japan styles and others got taken to McDonalds to experience what it tasted like in Japan. Same as New Zealand.

 

We visited an ancient temple at the top of a big hill. When we had walked around it we did a haka to the Japanese and the other tourists that were there. Chey was an awesome leader and by the screams from the girls, it was much appreciated. I wasn’t counting but I think Elijah got the most photos with them. Lots of training, a Japanese calligraphy class, meditation, more photos with Japanese schoolgirls and a 256km/hr bullet train ride and we arrive at Global Arena just outside Fukuoka. Two days of training quickly remind us what we are here for and we woke this morning excited about our first game in the Sanix Tournament in 2014.

 

We start slowly against Toin Gauken High School but eventually kick into gear to win 46-0. Lock Jermaiyne Maika and loosie James Parton both had great games, but the MVP went to Chey who made some dazzling runs from the wing. The ‘play of the day’ went to Matty for his attempted pick and go but I thought Poasa’s dive, which missed the ball by 7 metres, really deserved it.

 

Off to bed now, as I want to get some shut-eye before the snorers start. Looking forward to tomorrow’s game.

 

Sayonara from No. 18

 

Day 2

 

Konichiwa. Today started with another 6:15am breakfast, which was tough after Shanan and Oscar once again did their best to keep us all awake while they snored away peacefully.

 

I was really excited this morning for my first run in the starting XV. A team meeting at 8.00am and Jojo, Doc and their whanau arriving shortly after with food and other pre-game necessities meant it was time to start preparing. I did my usual listening to music and just chilling, focusing on what I was going to do on the field. 

 

They had an opening ceremony at the stadium with a march past from all the teams including the girls sevens. We have been supporting Fielding High School. as well as some of the other teams. Oscar and Poasa even got to play frisbee with the Canadian girls. Some of the boys reckon they were being too friendly, but I can’t say anymore!!!

 

The game was a bit of a blur but I think I did okay as the coaches seemed pleased with our performance and against another good Japanese team, Josho Gauken, a 47-5 win wasn’t bad. We know that we have to keep improving if we want to continue to be competitive from here on in. Fullback-for-today Shanan and lock Aaron both got MVP points for their efforts but the top award went to Joe Coventry who scored 2 tries and worked hard all game at openside. Mr Kirkham managed to pick up the ‘Play of the day’ by screaming out a lineout call he wanted us to do when we were having a scrum. Coaches must be getting a bit jaded!

 

Two of the Japanese teams in the other sections are looking particularly dangerous and have already knocked over the English and Australian teams. Uruguay is also travelling well but the standout teams are the French and Paarl Boys from South Africa. They’re both big and strong especially in their forwards. We have a rest day tomorrow which I’m looking forward to and have planned a trip to Nagasaki Atomic Museum.

 

Tonight all teams met for a special dinner and each team had to put on a performance. Jermaiyne and Corey have had us practicing our dance/lipsync routine like we were performing at the academy awards but as usual, hard work pays off and it went off a treat with the crowd. I think some of the parents were putting it on Youtube.

 

A quick team meeting at 9pm and we were glad to have time in our bunks to get our diaries up to date and list our individual strengths and weaknesses from today’s game. We tease a few boys that they’re spending more time on their books here than back at school. Lights out in 5 minutes, so I better sign off for the night.

 

Sayonara from No. 18

 

 

 

 

 

 

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