SPORTS

Junior Japan: We Are Here To Win

The Junior Japan rugby team are aiming to win this year’s World Rugby Pacific Chal­lenge and captain Shota Fuki be­lieves they are well-positioned to do so. The competition starts today
08 Mar 2019 10:12
Junior Japan: We Are Here To Win
Shota Fuki of Junior Japan believes they are well positioned to take on Samoa A.

The Junior Japan rugby team are aiming to win this year’s World Rugby Pacific Chal­lenge and captain Shota Fuki be­lieves they are well-positioned to do so.

The competition starts today with Junior Japan taking on Samoa A at 2:30pm, followed by the Swire Ship­ping Fiji Warriors against Tonga A at 5pm. Both matches will be played at Suva’s ANZ Stadium.

The Japanese have lost out to the Fijians two years running since 2017, but are confident of winning the competition in the year it is hosting the Rugby World Cup.

“It will be a big confident booster to win this competition ahead of the World Cup in September and the team is focussed on doing that,” Fuki said.

“Pacific teams play a very physical style of rugby which makes them dangerous opponents, but our team has prepared well to deal with those threats.”

Last year’s Junior Japan vs Samoa A encounter ended in a 29-21 win for the Japanese, in what proved to be a pulsating match between the two rivals.

Japan and Samoa are also Pool A opponents at September’s RWC, and will meet on October 5 at Toy­ota Stadium.

“The players are looking forward to the first game (against Samoa A) and the morale in camp is high,” captain Fuki said.

“Junior Japan is the second na­tional team so we will be working hard to prove ourselves ahead of the world cup.

“We like to play the ball wide and attack the spaces that may become available. The only weakness we have is that our players are slightly smaller in size compared to the Is­landers.”

Edited by Osea Bola

Feedback: sheldon.chanel@fijisun.com.fj



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