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Australia-raised trio named in Japan's squad

By AAP
(Photo by Kenta Harada/Getty Images)

Australian-raised trio Jack Cornelsen, Ben Gunter and Dylan Riley have been named in Japan’s 34-man training squad for their mid-year rugby Tests against Uruguay and France.

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No.8 Cornelsen, flanker Gunter and centre Riley are among 10 players included from the Saitama Wild Knights who clinched the inaugural League One final on Sunday, beating Tokyo Sungoliath 18-12.

Wild Knights flyhalf Takuya Yamasawa was rewarded for his heroics in the final with a recall to the national squad.

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Aotearoa Rugby Pod | Episode 15
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Yamasawa stood in for injured team mate Rikiya Matsuda, the regular Test flyhalf, and helped the Wild Knights to victory, crucially stripping Damian McKenzie of the ball just as the All Black looked certain to score.

The 27-year-old, who played three times for his country in 2017, was the only international flyhalf in the 34-man training squad with the other playmakers, Lee Seung-Shin and Hayata Nakao, among nine uncapped players.

The ‘Brave Blossoms’ face Uruguay in Tokyo on June 18 and again in Fukuoka a week later before taking on Six Nations champions France in Toyota on July 2.

Japan squad:

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Forwards – Keita Inagaki, Asaeli Ai Valu, Shinnosuke Kakinaga, Yusuke Kizu, Craig Millar, Yukio Morikawa, Atsushi Sakate, Daigo Hashimoto, Shota Horie, Saumaki Amanaki, Warner Dearns, Sanaila Waqa, Ben Gunter, Masato Furukawa, Pieter Labuschagne, Michael Leitch, Jack Cornelsen, Faulua Makisi.

Backs – Naoto Saito, Daiki Nakajima, Yutaka Nagare, Hayata Nakao, Takuya Yamasawa, Lee Seung-Shin, Yusuke Kajimura, Shogo Nakano, Dylan Riley, Taichi Takahashi, Jone Naikabula, Gerhard Van Den Heever, Siosaia Fifita, Rakuhei Yamashita, Ryuji Noguchi, Ryohei Yamanaka.

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