BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA – Japan fullback Ayumu Goromaru made his first Super Rugby start and scored all the Reds’ points with two penalty goals on Saturday, but it did not prove enough as his side went down 22-6 to the Western Force.
Goromaru, who came off the bench in the loss to the Waratahs in the opener last weekend, started alongside Japan teammate Hendrik Tui and drew his side level 3-3 in the 35th minute, putting the ball between the sticks from directly in front, 30 meters out.
Goromaru missed his next chance in the 44th minute from near the left touchline with his side trailing 9-3, and the Force made it 12-3 just moments later. Goromaru missed another on the 63rd minute when he hit the right upright from center-field before finally putting his second over the bar five minutes later.
“I’m disappointed I couldn’t do the job I have been entrusted with 100 percent,” Goromaru said. “I can’t help the team if I don’t leave my mark with my kicks. The main thing I need to do is make proper adjustments.”
Goromaru played the whole match, while Tui was replaced with eight minutes to go.
Prop Hiroshi Yamashita started his second game running for the Chiefs but was substituted at the 53rd minute, while Michael Leitch came off the bench with 18 minutes to go, but he was unable to help his team to a win as it fell 36-32 to the Lions.
In the English Premiership, prop Kensuke Hatakeyama came on in the 62nd minute for the Newcastle Falcons but could not prevent his side’s 15-14 loss to the Worcester Warriors.