Olympics | SPORTS

7s New Dawn: Ryan

Team Fiji Men’s National 7s coach Ben Ryan explained the detail and planning the squad went through before the 13 players were selected. “We had a number of overseas boys
17 Jul 2016 14:48
7s New Dawn: Ryan
Team Fiji’s Men’s Sevens Rugby head coach Ben Ryan (left), with Prime Minister and Fiji Rugby Union president Voreqe Bainimarama at the Grand Pacific Hotel in Suva last night. Photo: DEPTFO News

Team Fiji Men’s National 7s coach Ben Ryan explained the detail and planning the squad went through before the 13 players were selected.

“We had a number of overseas boys that came in and played in the last two legs and a couple that played on Hong Kong and they all came into camp four weeks ago a little bit overweight,” Ryan said.

“And every day in the morning and evenings we weigh them to make sure we are moving in the right direction.

“It didn’t matter if they were slow as long as they were going forward and not backwards. “We changed their diet, we took their carbohydrates out. gone was the bread, sugar, the pasta, the cassava, dalo and in were lean meats, salads, lots of water and it started to reap the dividends.

“The boys really did get into it as do the girls. We started to see everybody move up slowly but surely.

“There has been times where we felt that we had to put the brakes on and relax on what we have been doing in training, we can feel the tiredness and the fatigue, give them a little bit of time to rest and then hit them hard again.

We have been using our natural environment, the amazing world heritage, the Sigatoka sand dunes, has been the spine of what we have been doing in the fitness.

“We had been getting them ploughing up and down those sand dunes and they quickly get strong in the sands and then we have been going back to Pacific Harbour where we work them incredibly hard on the field.

“We had games last week on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday where we played the equivalent of just over four hours in contact rugby. In context that was 17 games so three back-to-back tournaments, a tournament a day effectively to see whether we had a robust team and for boys to go head to head against each other get the pack in order and get more clarity in my head.

“I knew I was going to have a difficult decision and we want difficult decisions, we don’t want to have an easy 12 because that will show we haven’t any depth and we haven’t any competition.

“On Friday night I sat in Bure 12 at the Uprising Beach Resort and one by one the boys came in and one by one we told them their fate and they were outstanding.  When they got selected they didn’t jump up and down they didn’t scream, some of them smiled a lot and one or two with tears but they took it like a man, they shook my hand they thanked us for the efforts and they left with their heads held high.

I told them that selections are not going to define them as a person and we all have our bad days and our good days.”


Why they missed out

This is an assessment of why the following players missed out on making the team:

Pio Tuwai: Nursing injuries and fitness

Waisea Nayacalevu: A close battle with Domolailai but needed more time for sevens

Josua Vici: Still young and has a bright future ahead of him

Alivereti Veitokani: Pushed Ravouvou right to the end

Nemani Nagusa: Gave his all but narrowly missed out

Amenoni Nasilasila: One of the fittest players but was unfortunate

Sevuloni Mocenacagi: Like Vici, one of our future stars

Emosi Mulevoro: Gave his best nothing less than that


Edited by Osea Bola

Feedback:  anasilinir@fijisun.com.fj

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