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‘7s Side Will Deliver in Hamilton’: Tuqiri

“I think Fiji is probably going through a rebuilding phase at the moment. There are a lot of the younger players coming on the scene this year,” Tuqiri said.
16 Jan 2020 12:23
‘7s Side Will Deliver in Hamilton’: Tuqiri
Guests of the 10th McDonald’s Coral Coast Sevens during the induction of Rupeni Caucaunibuca in the Rugby Walk of Fame in Sigatoka on January 15, 2020. From left: Karl Te Nana, tournament director Jay Whyte (holding son Tyson), Brian Hightower, Caucaunibuca, Ken Laban, Ben Gollings, Lote Tuqiri on January 12, 2019. Photo: Waisea Nasokia

Lote Tuqiri believes that Gareth Baber-coached Fiji Airways Fijian 7s side has what it takes to deliver in Hamilton next weekend.

And the former Wallaby/Kangaroo winger wants the players selected to rise to the occasion in the third tournament of the 2019-20 World Sevens Series.

Fiji is top seed in Pool D alongside Argentina, Australia and Samoa.

“I think Fiji is probably going through a rebuilding phase at the moment. There are a lot of the younger players coming on the scene this year,” Tuqiri said.

“We also have to congratulate some of the other teams in bringing the standard of the rugby up. That will take time but I am sure that Baber will get them to do the right things.

“They are the defending champion of the World Sevens Series. This time they are off to a slow start but the Fijian mentality is there is always big expectation for the team to perform.

“The coach and the players know that. So, the players will need to rise to the occasion and deliver in Hamilton. They probably have not had the luck at the moment, the games have been close and Fiji gets up in those tight games. Hopefully that turns around.”

He thanked the organisers of the Hamilton 7s for hosting the women competition together for the first time.

He added that he is looking forward to what’s on offer at the 2020 McDonald’s Coral Coast 7s at Lawaqa Park in Sigatoka.

“It is good to come back to the Coral Coast 7s. The tournament is close to my heart. I’m looking forward to watching some top-quality rugby,” he said.

About Tuqiri

Tuqiri is Fijian-born and represented Australia in rugby league and rugby.

He also represented Fiji in rugby league captaining the team to the 2000 RLWC.

In the NRL, he played for the West Tigers, Brisbane Broncos and the South Sydney Rabbitohs.

He also represented Queensland in the State of Origin.

He played rugby union for the Waratahs, Leicester Tigers, and Irish Club, Leinster.

He represented Australia in both Rugby League and Rugby Union, and Fiji in rugby league. Tuqiri played winger in both codes.

Edited by Osea Bola

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