Shiggy Konno, a major driving force of Japanese rugby who played a key role in forging links with Wales, has died at the age of 84, reports the Wales Rugby Union.
Shiggy Konno was Chairman of the Japan Rugby Football Union from 1972 until 1994 and was Japan National Team Manager for several overseas tours including the first two Rugby World Cups.
He was known throughout Wales and the rest of the rugby world for his work promoting Japanese and Asian rugby and in 1985 was awarded an honorary OBE by the Queen for his contribution to developing the game.
Shiggy Konno also served as Vice President, President and Honorary Advisor to the JRFU and was instrumental in setting up the Asian Rugby Football Union.
Welsh Rugby Union Chairman, David Pickering, said: â€œShiggy Konno was a great rugby personality and a man of integrity and vision who was held in the highest regard here in Wales.
â€œHe will also be remembered with great warmth here and we want to express our sincere condolences to his family, friends and colleagues in Japan.â€