Opinion | SPORTS

Be Warned, New Zealand Maori All Blacks Out For Blood

Make no mistake, the Maori are a proud and warrior like people. They are plotting for revenge on their home turf after the Suva humiliation. And they will do it on their terms and conditions.
15 Jul 2019 15:21
Be Warned, New Zealand Maori All Blacks Out For Blood
New Zealand Maori All Blacks

Opinion:

The Fiji Airways Flying Fijians lived up to their name on Saturday.

They were flying and their opponents, the New Zealand Maori All Blacks had no answer to a commanding performance at ANZ Stadium in Suva before a big crowd.

They displayed what they are capable of doing and served a warning to their more fancied opponents in the World Cup: “we are coming to Japan not to make up the numbers.”

The Maori All Blacks are no pushover. There are players there who are on the fringe of All Blacks selection.

But the Flying Fijians made them look ordinary.

It looked as if the visitors were not there mentally.

Before the test everyone was expecting a strong arm wrestle between the two teams.

But from the opening whistle, the Flying Fijians took off at full throttle.

They ran at the opposition at almost every opportunity even from deep in their territory when other teams would kick for the touchline.

The confidence, commitment and the brazen attitude to take the game to the Maori brought back memories of the past when we last beat them.

The Flying Fijians were not afraid to mix it – the structured play and the unorthodox style.

What they also had in abundance was speed and they broke lines at will creating space for the fast outside men to show their wares.

But not everything was working for the Flying Fijians. The lineout was a major weakness and they need to get it right before the rematch at the Rotorua Stadium next Saturday.

They also went to sleep for a part of the second half and allowed the Maori to sneak in two tries. In big games like this they can’t afford to do it to especially Tier one teams like Australian Wallabies, the All Blacks. They will be punished. They need to play their ‘A’ game for 80 minutes. They must learn to go for the jugular when the opposition is on the backfoot. They need that killer instinct.

Make no mistake, the Maori are a proud and warrior like people. They are plotting for revenge on their home turf after the Suva humiliation. And they will do it on their terms and conditions.

Rotorua is the heartland of Maori culture. It is steeped in rich history, tradition and culture, in legends of great wars and sacrifices. It is the home of the fearsome Te Arawa people who represent the three tribes of Ngati Pikiao, Tuhuirangi and Ngati whakaue.

This Saturday’s showdown is set to become one of those great wars. There will be a lot emotions.

The passion that deserted the Maori in Suva will certainly be back in Rotorua.

And the Flying Fijians better go there with their complete game. They have the firepower to bury the Maori on their home soil.

Edited by Osea Bola

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