Feb 4, 2016

Yamashita joins Chiefs for Super Rugby campaign

Japan prop Hiroshi Yamashita will join the Chiefs for the upcoming Super Rugby season, his Top League club, Kobe Kobelco Steelers, announced Thursday. The 30-year-old Yamashita, who has played 49 times for the Brave Blossoms and was a member of the team at last ...

Horie named Top League season MVP

Jan 25, 2016

Horie named Top League season MVP


Shota Horie of the Panasonic Wild Knights was on Monday selected as the best player of the 2015-16 Top League season in Japanese rugby’s banner year. The 30-year-old hooker, who helped Panasonic win its third straight championship with a 27-26 victory over the Toshiba ...

Panasonic captures Top League title

Jan 24, 2016

Panasonic captures Top League title


Panasonic Wild Knights survived an almighty late scare to become Top League champions for the third straight season after beating Toshiba Brave Lupus 27-26 in Sunday’s LIXIL Cup final. South African winger JP Pietersen looked to have put the Wild Knights home and dry ...

Jan 23, 2016

Red Hurricanes finish last in Top League

NTT Docomo Red Hurricanes discovered Saturday that signing high profile players on short-term contracts doesn’t guarantee a turnaround in fortune as they finished bottom of the Top League following a 32-22 defeat to NEC Green Rockets at Komazawa Olympic Park. Fortunately for Masahiro Shimooki ...

Panasonic, Toshiba reach Top League final

Jan 16, 2016

Panasonic, Toshiba reach Top League final


The Top League winners’ pennant will fly over a familiar training ground from the week after next after three-time champions Panasonic Wild Knights and five-time league winners Toshiba Brave Lupus advanced to the LIXIL Cup final. Two-time defending champion Panasonic beat Kobe Kobelco Steelers ...

Dec 31, 2015

Tanaka warns against complacency in Japanese rugby

Japan scrumhalf Fumiaki Tanaka has warned that banking on Japan’s World Cup success will be a mistake. In a year-end interview, the 30-year-old Tanaka, who plays in the Top League for Panasonic Wild Knights and in Super Rugby for the Highlanders, said Japanese rugby ...

Dec 24, 2015

Sunwolves to face Top League squad in charity match

Japan’s new Super Rugby side, the Sunwolves, will play a Top League XV at Toyota Stadium on Feb. 13, the Japan Rugby Football Union announced Thursday. The game is the latest edition of the the annual For All charity game put on by the ...

Dec 19, 2015

Shining Arcs remain in hunt for top-four finish

NTT Communications Shining Arcs kept alive their hopes of a top-four finish in Group A and a spot in the playoffs to determine the Top League champions on Saturday with a 29-15 win over Honda Heat. Head coach Rob Penney’s decision to keep a ...

Dec 13, 2015

Canon books spot in Top League playoffs

Canon Eagles became the fourth and final side from Group B to confirm their spot in the LIXIL Cup, the playoff tournament for the Top League. On Sunday, the Eagles defeated Toyota Industries Shuttles 35-19 to go third in the standings on 21 points, ...

Dec 3, 2015

Verblitz drop injured Palu

Australia back-row forward Wycliff Palu, who was set to join Toyota Verblitz this season, has been dropped by the Top League club due to an injury suffered during the Rugby World Cup in England, the team announced Thursday. The 57-time capped Palu, who had ...

Nov 28, 2015

Goromaru guides Yamaha Jubilo past NEC Green Rockets

Last season’s All-Japan Championship winners Yamaha Jubilo remained unbeaten in the 2015-16 Top League on Saturday thanks to a 39-19 win over NEC Green Rockets. Ayumu Goromaru scored one of Yamaha’s five tries and added four conversions and two penalty goals as Katsuyuki Kiyomiya’s ...

Rugby World Cup hero Tanaka slams JRFU for lack of effort

Nov 21, 2015

Rugby World Cup hero Tanaka slams JRFU for lack of effort

Panasonic Wild Knights and Japan scrumhalf Fumiaki Tanaka said Saturday that the Japan Rugby Football Union lacks the necessary zeal to capitalize on this year’s success at the Rugby World Cup. The Kyoto native was given a special sports award from the city of ...