Oku Memorial Tournament

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OURFC was proud to host, for the fourth consecutive year, the Oku Memorial Trophy played at Iffley Road on Saturday December 7th in honour of Ambassador Katsuhiko Oku,  who was the first Japanese national ever to represent the Blues – in the early 1980’s,  and to become a member of Vincent’s.  On the 10th anniversary of his tragic death whilst on diplomatic duty in Iraq,  former Prime Minister Mori a fellow Waseda University rugby alumnus  of Oku, had sent a new trophy to the tournament in his role as President of the Japan RFU.  The trophy was presented on the day by His Excellency Keichi Hayashi, the Japanese Ambassador to the UK,  who spoke warmly of Ambassador Oku’s life and achievements.  ‘Katsu’ is remembered not only for his contribution to the post-war international reconstruction programme in Iraq but also for his great efforts to win the Rugby World Cup for Japan and the award of the 2019 tournament is widely  regarded as part of his legacy.  As the tournament fell out of term time Oku’s alma mater Hertford College and Vincent’s Club once more fielded a joint XV against London Japanese and the Kew Occasionals,  with Kew running out winners for the third consecutive year.  OURFC are delighted to support this event to honour Ambassador Oku and further our longstanding historic links with the Japan RFU and Waseda University RFC.

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