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Fiji 7s Rugby: Fijians Still Regarded As A Threat, With 8 Hong Kong 7s First Timers

Fiji Rugby Union chief executive officer John O’Connor told SUN­sports that the team have settled in and had their first training run yesterday.
30 Mar 2019 14:41
Fiji 7s Rugby: Fijians Still Regarded As A Threat, With 8 Hong Kong 7s First Timers
Fiji Airways Fijian 7s rep Napolioni Ratu (closest to camera) and Vilimoni Botitu (third from right) with fans at the Nadi International Airport on March 28, 2019. Photo: Waisea Nasokia

The Fiji Airways Fijian 7s side are regarded by star players as one of the toughest teams to beat at the Hong Kong 7s.

The Gareth Baber-coached side have arrived in Hong Kong early to prepare for next weekend’s show­down.

Fiji Rugby Union chief executive officer John O’Connor told SUN­sports that the team have settled in and had their first training run yesterday.

“They are staying in a hotel and will be training at the Hong Kong Institute of Sports,” O’Connor said.

The young Fijian side are eyeing for a fifth-win-in-a-row but will be without key players like Vatemo Ravouvou, Amenoni Nasilasila, captain Kalione Nasoko who is in­jured and Mesulame Kunavula.

Despite bringing in new players of Napolioni Ratu, Isoa Tabu, Terio Tamani, Meli Derenalagi, Asaeli Tuivoka, Aminiasi Tuimaba, Livai Ikanikoda, and Vilimoni Botitu, who are Hong Kong first timers, they are still regarded as a threat.

World Rugby Sevens Player of the Year Perry Baker told South China Morning Post that Fiji will be hard to beat.

“It’s just because the style that they play,” the USA winger said.

“You have to be on your ‘A’ game on defence and you have to be on the lookout at all times.

“They have that agility to go later­al, so I would say those guys when they’re attacking and clicking, and they have a great offloading game, too.”

Similar sentiment was said by rising South African 7s playmaker Selvyn Davids who was the Blitz­boks hero when they won the Cana­da 7s in Vancouver last month.

“They are full of skilful players, a lot of speed and big players, you don’t know what to expect from them,” he said.

“But you can lose to any team on the day it has all become so com­petitive,” he added.

The Hong Kong 7s is from April 5-7.

Edited by Anasilini Natoga

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