The rugby world owe a debt to Samoa

Its been recently reported that Samoa rugby is bankrupt… What a sad state of affairs for the world of rugby to see this proud rugby nation struggling financially, when its offered so much to the rugby world. I’m from a generation that remember the impact (Western) Samoa had at the 1991 Rugby World Cup. They made…

England will need to step up

Did you see the Engand vs Argentina match? Inspired? Thrilling?  My heartbeat barely became elevated sadly as it became very evident in the opening 10 minutes that England had come to win by kicking points early and grind out a result. I’m not suggesting everytime England play then supporters should demand an epic performance, however…

Podcast interview with JRugby just released

I recently had the pleasure of being interviewed by Lee Watkins from JRugby Podcasts, who heard about my trip to Japan via the Trans Siberian Express. From talking about the aims of the trip, what’s involved, how my health has affected my travel choices and what I intend to do in Japan…it’s all here. So,…

Focus on Kobe

As part of my revue of the cities involved in hosting teams at the Rugby World Cup in 2019, I decided to look at Kobe, Japan’s sixth largest city.  The Port of Kobe opened in 1868 and adjacent to the port, a foreign settlement was established for the influx of people and cultures from around…

Focus on Sapporo City

Over the next few months, I’ll be writing about the various host cities for the Rugby World Cup 2019, exploring what they have to offer and what to see. This week I’m looking at Sapporo, which is the largest city in the northernmost main island of Hokkaido, with a population of 1.9 million. The city…

Sunwolves win against the Blues stuns bookies

The Blues’ 48-21 humiliation at the hands of the Sunwolves is officially the biggest Super Rugby upset this century.  I thought it was, and now the bookies have confirmed it! Data collected  in New Zealand has uncovered odds on every Super Rugby game since 2000, and the Blues’ humbling in Japan ranks as the most…

The dangerous art of making Mochi

Ever tried Mochi…not me, but after  seeing this video today it’s certainly on the list. This video follows Mitsuo Nakatani, who have been making Mochi for 23 years in what can only be described as the fastest man in Japan! Mochi is a rice based treat that has to be pounded and folded by two…

Lions, Tonga and a house move…its been a busy few weeks

So, the British and Irish Lions have finally returned home with a draw..which I feel is certainly a win in many ways. Taking on the consecutive world champions New Zealand, the Lions came away in the 3rd test with a strong performance that ended with a lucky win…how Warburton convinced the ref to reverse the…

Japan taste defeat at the hands of Ireland

To prepare for the Rugby World Cup in 2019 Japan have to take the long and difficult road against tough opposition and this month Ireland came knocking to take on the Brave Blossoms. With a weakened squad, Ireland would still be tough competition for Japan, who hoped to ensure the result would cause a stir…

Richie McCaw in Japan inspiring the next generation

If you are involved in rugby, you will know rugby has a distinct set of values that shine out on and off the pitch. All Blacks legend Richie McCaw certainly lives and breathes those values. McCaw is currently on a four-day charity tour of Japan on Friday and vowed to bring a smile to the…

Amazing opportunites for companies who sponsor my trip

I intend the travel to Japan via the Trans Siberian Express with 3 core aims in my mind… – Firstly to  inspire transplant and diabetic patients both here in the UK and Japan,and show them anything as possible. As someone who has kidney and diabetes issues since the age of 25, I’ve been greatly inspired…

Why my Mum and a lucky kidney transplant drives me on….

So in this blog I cover my plans for my trip, my love of rugby  and Japan, but I  have never shared what spurs me on to do this trip..and that’s namely my health and my Mum. Growing up in Norfolk my early years were basically one of running in fields, exploring the countryside, messing…

Japan capture the 2017 Asia Rugby Championship

Japan captured the 2017 Asia Rugby Championship today after a 16- 0 win over Hong Kong. Not only was it the Brave Blossoms day of victory, but it’s also their 25th title out of a possible 30 and their 10th straight since it became an annual tournament. However critics watching the match have commented that…

Japan Rugby World Cup 2019 The draw!

So the pools have been announced and personally I’m very happy with the draw from an England perspective. Group of Death? Pah, say that to Italy, who have to face New Zealand and South Africa. Of cause France and Argentina will be tough competition for England, however they are teams we have an excellent history…

Cool Japan…a spotlight on Japan

If you have ever watched NHK Television, then one show always stands out…”Cool Japan”. Hosted by Kokami Shoji and Risa Stegmayer, the show invites foreigners to visit and experience Japan and see what’s cool about Japan. From attractions, fashion, technology, culture, the show covers a variety of topics and always shows the unique differences and…

It’s Sumo time

One of the aims of the trip to the Japan Rugby World Cup is to immerse myself in Japanese culture, including theatre, music and traditional sports like Sumo. We all have a impression that Sumo is really a sport that is steep in tradition, never changing in hundreds of years, however you’d be surprised to…

Japan set to play Romania, Ireland & Australia

Japan are set to have some challenging matches in 2017, which see’s Romania being their first opposition on June 10, followed by two tests with Ireland on June 17 and 24. As many would expect, Jamie Joseph, the Japan RFU manager, expects the Romanian match to be physical. “None of the coaching staff and many of…

Eddie Jones reviews where Japan needs to head

Excellent article from http://www.asahi.com/ with Eddie Jones, England Manager reviewing his England success, Japan’s national team and culture. Looking at the success he’s had with England and what now needs to happen with Japan, Jones once again displayed his finger on the pulse of world rugby. Eddie Jones was asked what does Japan have to do in…

What are the core aims of my trip to Japan…

The trip to Japan will take about 8 days, with an expected stay in Japan lasting around 4 weeks. During my journey I hope to achieve 3 core aims…. Aims of the trip Sharing knowledge While in Japan I want to visit kidney and diabetic patients, to promote closer relationships with patients from the UK…