Beauden Barrett and the Suntory Sungoliaths have been defeated in the Top League final by the Panasonic Wild Knights 31-26 in Tokyo this afternoon.
Both sides had been dominant all season, but it was the Wild Knights who took control of the final, scoring 20 unanswered points to start the game, and a 23-7 lead at halftime.
They had to hold off a spirited Sungoliath comeback, who scored two late tries and nearly created one final full-field run to steal the game, only to knock it on.
"It's been a great season for us, we've played very well and sadly we couldn't get the job done today," Barrett said post-game.
"It's been a great competition. I love the speed, I love the skill level. I'm looking forward to taking what I've learnt here in Japan back to New Zealand."
While Barrett missed out on victory, there was success for fellow Kiwis, namely Wild Knights coach Robbie Deans, prop Craig Millar and first-five Hadleigh Parker.