Almost half the players who started the World Cup final, including All Blacks captain Sam Cane, will be in action when Japan's club rugby season kicks off this weekend.

Seven All Blacks and six Springboks who lined up for South Africa's narrow win in Paris in October are now in Japan Rugby League One as it looks to take its profile to a new level.

Cane and newly crowned World Rugby player of the year Ardie Savea headline a wave of incoming All Blacks that also includes fly-half Richie Mo'unga, scrum-half Aaron Smith and flanker Shannon Frizell.