New Year’s Greeting from the JRFU

Dear Rugby Family

On behalf of the Japan Rugby Football Union, I would like to wish you all a very Happy New Year!

2024 promises to be another fantastic year for Japanese rugby and we are particularly excited that both our men’s and women’s national Sevens teams will participate at the Paris 2024 Summer Olympics.

Sevens rugby, which became an Olympic sport in 2016, has grown to become incredibly popular worldwide due to its high speed and intensity, with defence turning to attack in the blink of an eye. We look forward to cheering on of our men’s and women’s teams as they target medals in Paris, representing Asian rugby.

Our men’s national team, the Brave Blossoms will make a fresh start this year with new Head Coach Eddie Jones as they begin their preparations for Rugby World Cup 2027. Fans can look forward to a series of spectacular test matches following the League One finals, with both England and the All Blacks set to tour Japan this year.

The Sakura Fifteen, our national women’s team is also preparing for Rugby World Cup 2025 in England next year. Expectations are high for their continued improvement following their successful 2023 season which included their participation in the inaugural WXV tournament in South Africa.

We extend our sincere thanks for all the effort and support of those involved over the years in growing women’s rugby. The expansion of the game in recent years has been remarkable, and the JRFU will put even more effort and investment into its promotion and development in Japan.

As the national union, we will continue our mission to promote, develop and strengthen rugby throughout the country with the goal of making Japan the country in which rugby is most accessible – to play, to be involved in, and to support and enjoy as a fan, alongside rugby’s core values of Integrity, Passion, Solidarity, Discipline and Respect.

We trust that you will continue to support us in our efforts to contribute to the realisation of a better society through the power of sport, and the power of rugby, and we sincerely wish that 2024 will be a wonderful year for all of you.

Masato Tsuchida
President of the Japan Rugby Football Union
January 1, 2024

Japan’s men and women sevens teams have both secured their places at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games following their victories in the finals of the Asia Rugby Regional Qualifier, at Yodoko Sakura Stadium in Osaka in November 2023.