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Pain From Missing Out On Rugby World Cup Inspires France-Based Prop To Keep Trying

Tagi said to train under a professional environment and to have more game time has given him a lot of confidence.
22 Oct 2019 15:06
Pain From Missing Out On Rugby World Cup Inspires France-Based Prop To Keep Trying
Fijian-born Stade Francais tighthead prop Luke Tagi in action during the French Top 14 competition. Photo: Planet Rugby

 

Rookie tighthead prop Luke Tagi is determined to win back his spot in the Fiji Airways Flying Fijians squad. He said that includes making the Flying Fijians team play the Barbarians in Twickenham on November 16.

Tagi who played against the Maori All Blacks in Rotorua, New Zealand, in July said the pain of being dropped from the Rugby World Cup squad, motivated him to work hard and keep on trying.

“I’m looking forward to playing for Fiji at the 2023 Rugby World Cup here in France,” he said.

“For me, I’m always ready to play for Fiji even for the next game against the Barbarians in England.”

The Vione, Gau, native was also one of the stars of the Fiji Airways Fijian Drua side when they hoisted the National Rugby Championship title last year.

This was where TV commentators dubbed him as the prop who could offload like Sonny Bill Williams.

He has now been contracted by French Top 14 club Stade Francais.

Tagi said to train under a professional environment and to have more game time has given him a lot of confidence.

“I’m using this to develop my rugby career.”

Fiji Airways Fijian Drua props (from left) Eroni Mawi and Luke Tagi after winning the 2018 National Rugby Championship at Churchill Park, Lautoka. Photo: NRC

Fiji Airways Fijian Drua props (from left) Eroni Mawi and Luke Tagi after winning the
2018 National Rugby Championship at Churchill Park, Lautoka. Photo: NRC

Tagi said he’s learning new techniques while playing for the club.

“It’s how I can improve my scrum techniques. I love the team and I get a lot of game time so it’s an advantage to me. The more game time the more experience I get and at the same time I keep on learning new things.”

The former Ratu Kadavulevu School student said playing alongside Springboks prop Willem Schalk Albert and two other Welsh props have boosted his game.

“The body conditioning here is very professional so it contributes to my performance through the last three games that I have played.”

Tagi added that his failure to make the final cut for the 2019 Rugby World Cup has motivated the native to work twice as hard for the next World Cup.

“I pushed myself to the limit and worked hard with a goal in mind to make it here in France. To get some experience and to become a better player,” he said.

Edited by Leone Cabenatabua

Feedback: simione.haravanua@fijisun.com.fj

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