9 Feb 2011

Kirwan wants banned player back for World Cup

7:14 pm on 9 February 2011

The Japan Rugby Football chairman says coach John Kirwan wants to bring back Christian Loamanu for his World Cup squad even though the winger has received a lifetime ban for drug use.

Noburo Mashimo says Kirwan, a former All Black, wants to reinstate the Tongan-born Loamanu but admits there would be problems with the move.

Loamanu, 24, played at the 2007 World Cup, but was sacked from Japan Top League side Toshiba Brave Lupus in 2009 and banned by the football union after two drug tests revealed traces of cannabis.

Mashimo says it will be difficult to bring him back but he has advised Kirwan to state his case at the union's executive meeting in March.