SPORTS

No Easy Pools

With the 2019 Rugby World Cup pools being drawn last night in Kyoto, Japan, Vodafone Flying Fijians head coach John McKee says, their focus is on the RWC qualifiers in
11 May 2017 11:00
No Easy Pools
John McKee

With the 2019 Rugby World Cup pools being drawn last night in Kyoto, Japan, Vodafone Flying Fijians head coach John McKee says, their focus is on the RWC qualifiers in July.

Speaking to SUNsports, McKee said their goal is on the away from home qualifiers against Tonga and Samoa set for July 8 and 15.

“Our goal is to do well and finish as Oceania’s top team,” the no-nonsense coach said.

McKee pointed out that with the quality of teams around, there is not going to be an easy pool at the 2019 RWC.

“But we’re not going to look ahead but to stay focused on the qualifiers, which is the road to the World Cup.”

In a glittering ceremony RWC champions New Zealand were drawn against the Springboks, Italy, Africa 1, and the repechage winner, the latter two teams to be decided through a qualification process by the end of next year.

New Zealand All Blacks coach Steve Hansen said on stage straight afterwards of the clash against the Springboks: “Everyone will get excited by it. We know each other pretty well so we’ll continue to understand each other before we get here I guess.

“It’s a great opportunity,” he said of the tournament in Japan, the first time it has been held in Asia.

“It’s a special part of the world, a unique culture. Rugby is developing here and they’re probably leading that development in this region.

“Let’s hope the tournament reaches great heights, it’s an exciting place to come to, and we all wish it the best.”

One of the biggest challenges for the All Blacks during the last World Cup in England 18 months ago was that only Argentina was capable of truly testing them in their pool, and the match, at Wembley, was a relatively close affair.

Tonga, Namibia and Georgia were the All Blacks’ other opponents.

Edited by Paula Tuvuki

Feedback:  leonec@fijisun.com.fj

 

 



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