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Japan confirm squad for Autumn Nations Series

Japan confirm squad for Autumn Nations Series

Michael Leitch

Michael Leitch and Kazuki Himeno headline a 37-man Japan squad named for their upcoming Autumn Nations Series fixtures against Ireland and Scotland.

Leitch has been replaced as skipper by Kubota Spears Funabashi Tokyo-Bay flanker Pieter Labuschagne, as previously confirmed by head coach Jamie Joseph earlier this month.

But the Toshiba Brave Lupus Tokyo flanker remains part of the squad for the Brave Blossoms’ tour of Europe, which begins with a clash against Ireland on November 6.

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Before the start of their Autumn Nations Series campaign, Japan will also welcome the Wallabies to Oita on October 23 before heading to Dublin to lock horns with Ireland.

The Brave Blossoms will then take on Portugal in Lisbon on November 13 before facing Scotland on the final weekend of the Autumn Nations Series on November 20.

The squad are currently training in Miyazaki Prefecture but will begin preparations for their Autumn internationals by setting up a new training base in Oita on Saturday.

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Japan squad:

FORWARDS: Shunsuke Asaoka, Keita Inagaki, Asaeli Ai Valu, Shinnosuke Kakinaga, Jiwon Gu, Craig Millar, Atsushi Sakate, Yusuke Niwai, Kosuke Horikoshi, Daichi Akiyama, James Moore, Liaki Moli, Ben Gunter, Jack Cornelsen, Yoshitaka Tokunaga, Ryota Hasegawa, Pieter Labuschagne, Michael Leitch, Tevita Tatafu, Kazuki Himeno, Shota Fukui

BACKS: Naoto Saito, Kaito Shigeno, Yutaka Nagare, Yu Tamaura, Rikiya Matsuda, Taichi Takahashi, Jone Naikabula, Shogo Nakano, Siosaia Fifita, Lomano Lava Lemeki, Semisi Masirewa, Ryoto Makamura, Timothy Lafaele, Dylan Riley, Ryohei Yamanaka

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