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Kunatani Joins Team: Baber

Kunatani Joins Team: Baber
Fiji Airways Fijian 7s utility player Isake Katonibau makes a tackle in their warm up match against Hong Kong at the Hong Kong Sports Institute on March 31, 2018, Photo: South China Morning Post
April 02
11:00 2018

France based- forward and Olympian Semi Kunatani joined the Fiji Airways Fijian 7s team in Hong Kong on Saturday.

This was confirmed to SUNsports yesterday by head coach Ga­reth Baber who indicated that Kunatani’s presence has boosted the squad.

“We are training well,” he said.

“We are enjoying both the food and the facilities at the Hong Kong Sports Institute.”

Baber said they worked on their defence as they focused on their communication on whether to make a tackle or not during game time.

“We had to do this on our own. That will be a big element as we will look at it this week. We will try to add force in contact areas but at the same make law abiding tackles as well.”

The side had their Easter church service and later conducted a coaching clinic in the nearby communities for the Hong Kong Rugby Football Union

Meanwhile, in an interview with the South China Morning Post, Baber said, they are aiming to win the Hong Kong Sevens and the Commonwealth Games gold medal.

“I want to win both and I know the Fijian public expects us to win both,” Baber said.

“Both are attainable for us. Obviously there is a lot of fuss in Fiji and a lot made of the fourth time we can potentially win Hong Kong on the trot.

“Hong Kong is a stand-alone tournament, there is a prestige to winning it and it stands big in Fijian minds in terms of accom­plishments.”

Baber said he has decided to potentially go with very similar squads for both tournaments.

“Three or four changes are going to be made. We see both Hong Kong and the Commonwealth Games as equally important for Fiji’s standing,” he said.

“We have had plans in place to develop as many players that could potentially lead to mixed squads playing but ultimately I have gone with the 16 players that I feel could do the job for us. We know it’s a tough ask but we have trained for it and we know what we have to do.”

Edited by Leone Cabenatabua

Feedback: karalaini.tavi@fijisun.com.fj

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