SPORTS

‘Space’ For Fiji In 2016

The Maori All Blacks may be back again in 2016 for another test match with the Vodafone Flying Fijians. This was a sentiment shared by New Zealand Maori Rugby Board
13 Jul 2015 09:11
‘Space’ For Fiji In 2016
Vodafone Flying Fijians fullback Kini Murimurivalu scores against the the Maori All Blacks at the ANZ Stadium, Suva, last Saturday. Photo: Rama

The Maori All Blacks may be back again in 2016 for another test match with the Vodafone Flying Fijians.

This was a sentiment shared by New Zealand Maori Rugby Board chairman Wayne Peters after the Maori All Blacks edged the Fijians 27-26 at the ANZ Stadium last Saturday.

Peters responded to sentiments echoed by the Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama during a Flying Fijians fundraiser last Friday that the test to be an annual fixture.

“With international windows fully committed, in a sense, it’s going to be hard to have games like this,” Peters said.

“There’s some sympathy in the fact that if we can find us some space and if all the stars align, we can keep Fiji as a 2016 option.”

Peters commended both sides for putting on a good display during what was the first test between the historic rivals since 2008.

“For the first 40 minutes, Fiji dominated. They had good possession. We took a long time to get into the game, but we finished strongly.

“I think our set play was good as well at the end. It wasn’t the baddest game, but we got home against a very good Fijian side.”

Looking towards the 2015 Rugby World Cup, Peters believed Fiji was off to a strong start and looked good to have an even better showing come September.

“I think they’ve been very encouraging. They’ve got a well-balanced side. They’ve obviously been in camp and haven’t had a lot of games so far and with a few games they’ll be a lot better.”

Following Saturday’s narrow finish, the Maori All Blacks have now won 19 test matches out of 29, having drawn twice with Fiji and losing seven times.

Feedback: eroni.tuinaceva@fijisun.com.fj

 


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