SPORTS

Close Call But We Made It: Katonibau

The Fiji Airways Fijian 7s team had a lucky escape when they edged out South Africa in the Hong Kong 7s Cup semifinals last night. The Fijians trailed 5-19 at
09 Apr 2018 10:00
Close Call But We Made It: Katonibau
Fiji Airways Fijian 7s team (from left) Amenoni Nasilasila, Kalione Nasoko, Semi Kunatani, Josua Vakurunabili, Jone Niurua (manager), Eroni Sau, Seremaia Tuwai, Vatemo Ravouvou, Samisoni Viriviri, Paula Dranisinukula, Mesulame Kunavula, Naca Cawanibuka (trainer) and Alasio Naduva after their 26-24 win over South Africa in the Hong Kong 7s Cup semifinal on April 8, 2018. Photo: Kitione Rokomanu/ Zoom Fiji

The Fiji Airways Fijian 7s team had a lucky escape when they edged out South Africa in the Hong Kong 7s Cup semifinals last night. The Fijians trailed 5-19 at halftime as the young Blitzboks dazzled them with their speed and again exploited their sloppy defence.

After a strong pep talk from coach Gareth Baber, the Fijians came out firing with tries to rover Samisoni Viriviri and super sub Amenoni Nasilasila who scored twice and added the conversions for the narrow win.

Veteran forward Isake Katonibau said they were grateful to make the Cup final.

“Playing in Hong Kong is always special to us. With our Fijian fans and those back home we’ll go and give everything in the final.”

Earlier on in the Cup quarterfinals, the Fijians ran riot over Argentina with a 40-14 win with Eroni Sau and Semi Kunatani leading the charge with their blockbusting runs. Captain Seremaia Tuwai received a yellow card just before halftime for a deliberate knock-on. He was later followed by Katonibau for dangerous play.

  Fiji Airways Fijian 7s winger Alasio Naduva scores a try against Argentina in Hong Kong on April 8, 2018. Photo: Kitione Rokomanu/ Zoom Fiji

Fiji Airways Fijian 7s winger Alasio Naduva scores a try against Argentina in Hong Kong on April 8, 2018. Photo: Kitione Rokomanu/ Zoom Fiji

RESULTS

Challenge Trophy QF- Samoa 0-38 France, England 14-17 Australia, Wales 7-15 Russia, Canada 45-0 South Korea; Cup QF- Fiji 40-14 Argentina, South Africa 38-5 Spain, Kenya 19-12 Scotland, USA 7-35 New Zealand; 13th Place SF- Samoa 33-10, England, Wales 49-5 South Korea; Challenge Trophy SF- France 24-12 Australia, Russia 12-19 Canada; 5th Place SF- Argentina 14-12 Spain, USA 19-15 Scotland; Cup SF- Fiji 26-24 South Africa, New Zealand 12-21 Kenya.  – Edited by Leone Cabenatabua

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