Sunwolves head coach Filo Tiatia has revealed his squad for the upcoming Super Rugby season, with Fumiaki Tanaka one of the new signings.
One surprise omission is Akihito Yamada, the team’s star winger in 2016 who scored nine tries throughout the Sunwolves’ debut season.
Substantial turnover throughout the squad sees few faces return from last season. Two other notable signings include livewire back Kotaro Matsushima along with back-row Willie Britz.
2017 will be Tiatia’s first season in charge since taking over from Mark Hammett.
Players in: Takeshi Hino, Kyosuke Kajikawa, Willie Britz, Uwe Helu, Yoshitaka Tokunaga, Shuhei Matsuhashi, Malgene Ilaua, Yuhimaru Mimura, Takahiro Ogawa, Tanaka, Yuki Yatomi, Hayden Cripps, Hikaru Tamura, Timothy Lafaele, Kenki Fukuoka, Teruya Goto, Yasutaka Sasakura
Players out: Shinnosuke Kakinaga, Futoshi Mori, Tim Bond, Tim Bond, Yoshiya Hosoda, Naohiro Kotaki, Taiyo Ando, Andrew Durutalo, Shokei Kin, Atsushi Hiwasa, Daisuke Inoue, Mifiposeti Paea, Ryohei Yamanaka, Kentaro Kodama, Viliami Lolohea, John Stewart, Yamada, Hajime Yamashita
Sunwolves 2017 squad
Forwards: Keita Inagaki, Masataka Mikami, Koki Yamamoto, Takeshi Kizu, Takeshi Hino, Shota Horie, Takuma Asahara, Heiichiro Ito, Koo Jiwon, Hitoshi Ono, Kyosuke Kajikawa, Shinya Makabe, Liaki Moli, Willem Britz, Edward Quirk, Uwe Helu, Yoshitaka Tokunaga, Shuhei Matsuhashi, Malgene Ilaua, Yuhimaru Mimura
Backs: Keisuke Uchida, Takahiro Ogawa, Fumiaki Tanaka, Kaito Shigeno, Yuki Yatomi, Harumichi Tatekawa, Hikaru Tamura, Yu Tamura, Hayden Cripps, Teruya Goto, Kenki Fukuoka, Timothy Lafaele, Derek Carpenter, Yasutaka Sasakura, Kotaro Matsushima, Riaan Viljoen
Photo credit: Sunwolves