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Flying Fijians Set For Battle

The Fijians playing in Europe will be closely monitored by Flying Fijians head coach Vern Cotter, who will put together a team to feature against the Six Nations teams in an eight-team tournament.
13 Aug 2020 16:47
Flying Fijians Set For Battle
Semi Radradra

Flying Fijians sensation and one of the best players in the world today Semi Radradra is expected to light up the Gallagher Premiership Rugby, which resumes on Saturday.

159 days after the COVID-19 pandemic brought the premiership comp to a halt, Radradra is expected to debut for the Pat Lam–coached Bristol Bears since joining the club from Bordeaux RC in France in July.

Radradra’s Bears face Eroni Mawi’s Saracens, who are being demoted to Championship Rugby next season, at Ashton Gate Stadium in Bristol.

A standout individual across both rugby codes, Radradra averaged 100metres a game at the 2019 Rugby World Cup, lighting up the competition pool stages with a string of sensational displays, including a brace against Georgia.

During his time in the Australian NRL (National Rugby League), Radradra was named Dally M winger of the year for two seasons in a row, scoring 82 tries in 94 games for Parramatta Eels.

2003 Rugby World Cup winning England coach Sir Clive Woodward rates Radradra as one of the five players to watch in the competition. The others are Manu Tuilagi (Sale Sharks), Kyle Sinkler (Bristol Bears), Stuart Hogg (Exeter Chiefs) and Matteo Minnoz (Wasps)

The Fijians playing in Europe will be closely monitored by Flying Fijians head coach Vern Cotter, who will put together a team to feature against the Six Nations teams in an eight-team tournament.

Fiji and Japan will join the tournament that is set to replace this year’s Autumn Tests. The competition kicks off on November 14 – two weeks after the final round of the 2020 Six Nations is completed.

Fiji will face England, Wales and Ireland in one group while in the other pool, Scotland will host Japan and France at Murrayfield and face Italy in Rome. The tournament will be staged on four consecutive weekends until December 5, with each team facing their equivalent in the other pool on the final weekend, with the venue to be decided.

Northampton Saints

Other Fijians who are keen to return to action for their clubs are Sam Matavesi, Api Ratuniyarawa and Taqele Naiyaravoro for Northampton Saints,

The Saints host Nathan Hughes at Franklin Gardens on Monday and Cotter would definitely be interested in including Yasawa native and former Wallaby Naiyaravoro in his squad provided he has completed his eligibility requirements.

Leicester Tigers

The other point of interest for Cotter would Leicester Tigers Fijians Nemani Nadolo and Kini Murimurivalu.

Although retiring from international duty last year, Cotter could include in Nadolo in his set-up.

Fullback Murimurivalu will miss the first round against Exeter Chiefs because he is currently in France finalising his travel arrangements.

London Irish

Albert Tuisue has been a sensation since joining the Exiles as has been outstanding as lock/number eight. The Kadavu native was one of the unluckiest to miss out on the 2019 RWC.  This is the time for him to make his mark as the Exiles play Semesa Rokoduguni’s Bath at The Rec.

Harlequins

Lock forward Tevita Cavubati is lone Fijian at The Stoop for Harlequins after departure to France of Vereniki Goneva and Semi Kunatani. The double RWC lock forward has wealth of experience  with Glasgow Warriors based Leone Nakarawa that Cotter can bank on. The Quins face Sale Sharks at The Stoop on Saturday.

Some of the matches will be aired live in Fiji One.

Edited by Naisa Koroi

Feedback: oseab@fijisun.com.fj



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