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Irish expectation soars as Andy Farrell's team sweeps all in its path, but cool heads are needed if they are to heed mistakes of the past

Watch: Former Chiefs midfielder Johnny Fa'auli's colossal hit in Japan League One

By Sam Smith
(Source/J Sports)

Former Chiefs midfielder Johnny Fa’auli delivered a colossal hit while playing for Toshiba Brave Lupus in his side’s clash with the Osaka Red Hurricanes in the second round of Japan Rugby League One.


The 26-year-old put the 119kg No 8 Lui Naeata, one of the most powerful runners in the league, on his backside when the two collided during a lineout play that sent Naeata up for a midfield crash.

Tongan-born Naeata, a member of the Japanese national squad last year, had been a try-scoring revelation for the Kobelco Steelers in recent seasons before joining the Red Hurricanes this year.

Fa’auli’s rush defence met Naeata with full force, but earned him a red card after his tackle was deemed to be dangerous with no arms. In a double-carding, Fa’auli’s teammate Warner Dearns was yellow-carded for a similar tackle on the very next phase.

Dearns took out a Red Hurricanes player after a pass with another no-arms tackle.

Fa’auli, who made 17 appearances for the Chiefs between 2017 and 2018, was caught up in similar circumstances during his time in Super Rugby. He famously put a similar tackle on Reds No 8 Caleb Timu but escaped on-field sanction for the tackle.

The Toshiba Brave Lupus were already in control of the game at the time of their double-carding, ahead by 32-16, and went on to win the match comfortably 35-16 in a disrupted round of League One which saw multiple games postponed.



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