Editorial | Sunvoice

Editorial: Critical Europe Tests for flying Fijians ahead of 2019 RWC

With the 2019 Rugby World Cup less than a year away, the upcoming Test matches for the Fiji Airways Flying Fijians in Europe are critical. This is an opportunity for
05 Nov 2018 09:17
Editorial: Critical Europe  Tests for flying  Fijians ahead  of 2019 RWC

With the 2019 Rugby World Cup less than a year away, the upcoming Test matches for the Fiji Airways Flying Fijians in Europe are critical.

This is an opportunity for head coach John McKee and his coaching staff to test all potential players as they start to put together the RWC team.

What has made their job much more interesting is the rise of local-based players who were part of the success of the Fiji Airways Fijian Drua side in winning the Australian National Rugby Championship.

Eight local-based players – Frank Lomani, Alivereti Veitokani, Albert Tuisue, Mosese Voka, Eroni Mawi, Veremalua Vugakoto, Mesulame Dolokoto and Joeli Veitayaki – reported to the Reg 9 camp in Toulouse, France, on Tuesday and were joined by the overseas-based players.

McKee and his coaching crew have the big task of moulding these local players with the overseas-based players so they could become a powerful force during the RWC in Japan.

The unavailability of seasoned campaigners such as captain Akapusi Qera, Nemani Nadolo, Patrick Osborne, Nemani Nagusa, Timoci Nagusa, Asaeli Tikoirotuma, Levani Botia and Api Ratuniyarawa has provided the opportunity for the coaching department to test the new players and see what they are capable of.

This starts for McKee and his coaching crew this coming Sunday (Fiji time) against Scotland in a sold-out Murrayfield Stadium in Edinburgh.

Despite the Scots going down 21-10 to Wales on Saturday, they will be no pushover because they will be out to avenge their 27-22 loss to the Fijians in Suva last year.

We all want the Flying Fijians to win, but we should not lose focus of the big picture.

Instead, if we do win we should see it as a bonus and as of now we should expect whatever results they achieve.

This also goes for the Test matches against Uruguay at Hartpury College ground in London on November 17 and France at the Stade de France in Paris on November 24.

Let’s wish our Flying Fijians all the best in all their Test matches as they prepare towards the 2019 RWC, where winning all our pool games, and qualifying for the quarter-finals and beyond, really matters.

Feedback:  leonec@fijisun.com.fj

 

 

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