SPORTS

McKee Wary Of Georgian Forwards

Speaking from Otsu, Japan yesterday, head coach John McKee said the team was working hard on their scrummaging, line-outs, maul and maul defence ahead of the game.
30 Sep 2019 13:56
McKee Wary Of Georgian Forwards
Fiji Airways Flying Fijians prop Manasa Saulo during a training session on September 29, 2019, in Japan. Saulo and his Flying Fijians teammates are preparing for their next Rugby World Cup Pool D match against Georgia on Thursday, October 3. Photo: Bruce Southwick/ZoomFiji

The Fiji Airways Flying Fijians are anticipating a tough battle in the forwards line in the must-win game against Georgia this Thursday.

The team have been hard at training in Japan ever since the shock 27-30 loss to Uruguay last week, which damaged their hopes of reaching the quarterfinals.

They have a chance to rectify that against Georgia with a bonus-point win and hope other results go their way.

Speaking from Otsu, Japan yesterday, head coach John McKee said the team was working hard on their scrummaging, line-outs, maul and maul defence ahead of the game.

Georgia’s strength lies in their forward pack, as was evident in the opening 43-14 loss to Wales last week.

Despite the heavy loss, Georgia competed reasonably well at scrum time winning five out of five.

Their two tries also came from a rolling maul and successful pick and drive, which further underlines their prowess in that area.

McKee said: “This has been our biggest training day of the week so [it was] very, very important in our match preparation.

“This morning’s session was a split unit session with backs and forwards operating independently, a gym session and in-field forwards concentrated on scrums and line-outs.

“We also did quite a bit of work on maul and maul defence, while the backs have working strike plays and also specific skills for this game.

“We want to go through our plays for the game under some real pressure and also do hard work around our ruck and contact area skills to ensure we can retain possession and win quick ball.”

The team has been boosted by the return of loose forwards Peceli Yato and Semi Kunatani, who are both tipped to start against the Los Lelo.

However, the coach had earlier said that Yato will only be involved in non-contact training this week.

It is unclear whether Viliame Mata has recovered from the injury he sustained in the opening game against Australia.

Edited by Leone Cabenatabua

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