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Why We Won? Baber Tells

Why We Won? Baber Tells
Back (left-right) Sevuloni Mocenacagi, Mesulame Kunavula. Front (left-right) Alasio Naduva, Amenoni Nasilasila, Waisea Nacuqu, Seremaia Tuwai (captain) and Eroni Sau celebrate the Canada Sevens win in Vancouver on March 12, 2018. Photo: Zimbio
March 13
11:00 2018

Team unity and maturity were the winning ingredi­ents of the Fiji Airways Fi­jian 7s team when they hoisted the Canada Sevens title for the first time in Vancouver yesterday.

This was revealed by head coach Gareth Baber after Fiji obliterated Kenya 31-12 in the Cup final.

“Obviously it is physical battle that goes on here but it’s the fatigue and the mental battle that goes in the changing room,” he said.

“My hat off to the players over the weekend. This is a tough and a com­petitive environment and we have settled as a team.”

The win before raucous Fijians, made them the first team to win two tournaments, Hamilton and Canada Sevens of the 2017/18 World Rugby Sevens Series.

The team played with a lot of zeal and was Baber ever so confident on day one of the tournament when he said Fiji will win it all come Sunday.

WAS HE TRUE TO HIS WORDS?

Baber saluted his side’s tenacity throughout the tournament, hav­ing recovered from a Cup semifinal loss to USA in Las Vegas last week­end.

“There was a reason as to why I made that claim”, he told SUN­sports after the final win.

“After we lost to USA in the Cup semifinal, the boys were ever so determined to win the Canada Sev­ens.”

TUWAI INJURY

He admitted that captain Seremaia (Jerry) Tuwai played although he was nursing a shoulder injury.

“Jerry was bad. He had a scan, an ultrasound scan which showed he had a potential fracture and had it come true he needed an operation immediately in Canada.

“I was not going to take a chance, it was a risk with Jerry and I know my job was on the line at the end of it all, but he came through for us.”

Kenya head coach Innocent Simi­yu conceded defeat saying Fiji was very strong in the final and he was happy for them.

“Fiji is a great team,” he said.

“They were simply too good in the final. Congratulations Fiji for win­ning the Canada Sevens”.

Josua Vakurinabili scored Fiji’s first try while Sevuloni Mocenaca­gi levelled it 12 all in the first half. Mocenacagi, Alasio Naduva and Paula Dranisinukula scored in sec­ond half.

Edited by Leone Cabenatabua

Feedback: leonec@fijisun.com.fj

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