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Neil Powell: Fiji 7s Wing Aminiasi Tuimaba Is Next Big Thing

“He is a great player who has a bright future,” Powell said. Tuimaba missed the Kenya match, Fiji’s opening pool game serving the last of three match suspension. He suffered a head injury against Canada, staggered off the field and was periodically taken off for observation against New Zealand and
12 Mar 2019 11:41
Neil Powell: Fiji 7s Wing Aminiasi Tuimaba Is Next Big Thing
Fiji Airways Fijian 7s rep Aminiasi Tuimaba.

Neil Powell has highly rated Fiji Airways 7s player Aminiasi Tuimaba.

The South Africa coach said Tuimaba is the next big thing.

“He is a great player who has a bright future,” Powell said. Tuimaba missed the Kenya match, Fiji’s opening pool game serving the last of three match suspension. He suffered a head injury against Canada, staggered off the field and was periodically taken off for observation against New Zealand and South Africa. Tuimaba played through injury and it takes a lot of courage, said Powell.

“He (Tuimaba) was hurting, he showed up for his team. He’s the next big thing. “Obviously Tuimaba will grow into the game. There’s no slacking off in the player.”

South Africa coach Neil Powell.

South Africa coach Neil Powell.

Powell’s side obliterated Fiji 31-12 in the Cup semifinal and went on to win its first gold medal of the Canada Sevens in Vancouver.

South Africa defeated France 21-12.

“We just played well against Fiji,” he said.

“It was never about the potential of the players, rather the ability to play for and with each other. All week I could feel the difference.

“I felt that the squad needed some time to combine and mould as a team and it happened this weekend.

The players trusted our system and each other.

“It was a tournament where we really showed good defensive discipline, but our attack was equally impressive, especially against Argentina and Fiji.”

Fiji Airways Fijian 7s team stand-in captain Paula Dranisinikula beats New Zealand’s Vilimoni Koroi during the Canada 7s in Vancouver on March 11, 2019. Photo: Ian Muir

Fiji Airways Fijian 7s team stand-in captain Paula Dranisinikula beats New Zealand’s Vilimoni Koroi during the Canada 7s in Vancouver on March 11, 2019. Photo: Ian Muir

Tuimaba and Fiji beat points leaders USA 24-12 for the third-place finish. Coach Gareth Baber said his players gave their all despite carrying injuries.

“Not the result we wanted,” he said.

“We will take the third place. “My players showed a lot character, we will go back home and work hard before the Hong Kong 7s.”

Edited by Osea Bola

Feedback: oseab@fijisun.com.fj

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