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ANALYSIS: 7-Week Test Starts Today

ANALYSIS: 7-Week Test Starts Today
Fiji Airways Drua player Vasikali Mudu meets with President Major-General (Ret’d) Jioji Konrote after the team presented their i tautau at the Boron House on August 31,2018.Photo:Simione Haravanua.
September 01
11:25 2018

The Fiji Airways Fijian Drua have a clear mission statement cut out for them. For Fiji, Ever Fiji in 2018.

They need to up the ante in the next seven weeks and the test starts today when they play Melbourne Rising in the opening game of the National Rugby Championship at Ratu Cakob­au Park, Nausori.

Skipper Mosese Voka and his men must set the platform and prove that local players can step up and compete in a tough and competi­tive environment.

They need to prove that they deserved to be included in the NRC comp for the second year in a row competing against Super Rugby and Wallabies-laden Australian clubs.

Definitely competition will be tough com­pared to last year as there will be no space for rest/ bye as there would 7 weeks of continuous rugby.

The tight squeeze put on the new format by Rugby Australia to accommodate prime time television slots by Fox Sports, would test our players to the tilt, mentally and physically.

We know how our Fiji Airways Fijians 7s team flopped badly when they could not cope with the new format at the Rugby World Cup Sevens in July in San Francisco.

This means that maintaining continuity and consistency are paramount if our Drua is to survive in the long run.

This means that their body conditioning must be up to par week in week out and we can’t af­ford to impress in one and flat in another.

This means that our Drua must learn fast and smart week in week out and coaching staff don’t have time to really re-school play­ers week to week.

Our players have a point to prove in the next seven weeks.

They are our future stars and the NRC has provided a platform for them to build their ca­reer and contest for spots in the Fiji Airways Flying Fijians in the November Tour of Eu­rope, 2019 and 2023 Rugby World Cups.

They need to prove they can play at the next level and we are optimistic they can.

The test for our future stars starts today. Fans need to be in Nausori to cheer them up. For Fiji, Ever Fiji

Edited by Leone Cabenatabua

Feedback: oseab@fijisun.com.fj

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