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March 24, 2017 8:59

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15:34 20 January 2017

Rugby: Sunwolves add Nunomaki, Wykes and Tupou to squad

TOKYO, Jan. 20, Kyodo

The Sunwolves added three more players to their ever-expanding Super Rugby squad Friday with the addition of Shunsuke Nunomaki, Sam Wykes and William Tupou.

Waseda University graduate Nunomaki has had a standout year for Panasonic Wild Knights, taking over the captaincy from Shota Horie halfway through the season and winning selection to the Top League Top XV.

The 24-year-old flanker was included in the Japan squad for the November tests and has won three caps.

In addition to being teammates at Coca-Cola Red Sparks, lock Wykes and center Tupou both played for the Western Force before heading to Japan in 2015 and 2016, respectively.

Wykes has 87 Super Rugby caps to his name while Tupou has 13. Both are eligible to play for Japan once they have fulfilled the residency requirement.

Current World Rugby regulations state a player can represent a national team after "36 consecutive months of residence immediately preceding the time of playing" providing they have not played senior rugby for another country.

However, it is expected that will soon rise to five years based on a proposal from World Rugby vice chairman Agustin Pichot.

Filo Tiatia's Sunwolves squad currently numbers 45 and Japan head coach Jamie Joseph, who oversees the team, hinted Thursday that yet more would be added.




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