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Editorial: United Effort To Make Our 7s Rugby Tick

Taking three extra players is a step in the right direction as we build depth and momentum in winning the series title and defending the gold medal at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.
25 Feb 2019 17:05
Editorial: United Effort To Make  Our 7s Rugby Tick
Fiji Airways Fijian 7s extended squad pray before training at Albert Park, Suva. The 13-players for the USA leave today for Las Vegas. Photo: Ronald Kumar

We should be thankful that the Fiji Airways Fijian 7s team will be in full force at the USA Sevens in Las Vegas this weekend.

This is good news for all concerned fans, players and Fiji Rugby Union as our men attempt to win the third tournament of the 2018-2019 World Sevens Series at Sam Boyd Stadium.

Never before in the history of the series have we selected 15 players for one cluster and FRU must be applauded for its forward planning.

Taking three extra players is a step in the right direction as we build depth and momentum in winning the series title and defending the gold medal at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.

The FRU board saw it fitting that the way forward for developing our players was exposing them to a more competitive environment such as the world 7s series.

Batinisavu Uluiyata, Isoa Tabua and Asaeli Tuivoka left with the team on Friday and should provide competition for starting spots for our regular reps and should make full use of the opportunity.

Speedster Alasio Naduva will join the team yesterday after he left on Saturday morning while Tuivoka will fly out tomorrow.

Both players visa application were approved by the United States Embassy at the weekend.

Meanwhile, the on and off the field demeanour of our players tarnished the image of the game and it’s timely that our boys start afresh in Vegas.

We have devoted, passionate and patriotic fans all over the world.

And they will turn up in full force at Sam Boyd Stadium to show their support.

It’s only proper that the Kalione Nasoko-captained team do it for the country and fans.

In another development, Canadian Fijians have done more this year.

They raised $14,500 in fundraising last Friday in Surrey, which will be given to the players next weekend.

Petaia Usakilakeba, the co-ordinator for the dinner and dance fundraiser said: “Our Fijian community in Vancouver have proven that we can achieve unity and love by working together as one, putting our differences behind and live the way the world should be. I’m proud to say that our community have raised more than $14,500 from the collective effort of everyone that supported this good cause for our rugby boys. It was a very great evening for most of us.”

The FRU, fans, sponsors have all contributed.

The onus is now on the Fiji Airways Fijian 7s head coach Gareth Baber and the players to put together a winning formula.

We have done it before in Vegas, we can do it again.

 

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