Rugby | SPORTS

Gollings Wary Of COVID-19

The rise in COVID-19 cases is a concern for the Fiji Airways men's sevens team as they prepare for the Birmingham Common­wealth Games which kicks off on July 28 and rounds off on August 8.
07 Jul 2022 18:05
Gollings Wary Of COVID-19
Former Fijian 7s captain.Paula Dranisinukula.

The rise in COVID-19 cases is a concern for the Fiji Airways men’s sevens team as they prepare for the Birmingham Common­wealth Games which kicks off on July 28 and rounds off on August 8.

Fiji recorded 181 new cases of which 73 new cases were recorded on July 1, 21 new cases on July 2 and 44 on July 3 and 43 new cases as of 8am on July 4.

Head coach Ben Gollings after nam­ing the team yesterday said they will maintain all strict measures for play­ers’ safety and wellbeing.

“It’s obviously a concern,” Golling said.

“It’s something we have to be wary of and we should tighten things up like making sure we are out and about wearing masks and just being diligent with it.

“The consequences of having COV­ID now is great, we don’t want to have any in our squad. We want to keep everyone fit and healthy.”

Leadership

Former national sevens captain Paula Dranisinukula’s join Rio Olym­pic gold medallists Semi Kunatani and Jerry Tuwai to propel Fiji’s mis­sion in securing their first gold medal at the upcoming Commonwealth Games.

Gollings indicated the Drauniivi, Ra native who was away on peacekeep­ing duties when Fiji collected gold at the Olympics has experience to offer to the team.

“Paula is somebody we know would be available to the team, not earlier on in the season but lately,” Gollings said.

“For us, it was not a shock in terms of him coming into the sevens squad. He has leadership experience.”

Fiji fell short in bringing home the 2018 Commonwealth gold in Austral­ia. It would be history if Gollings’ men make that possible in England.

Maqala

Also in are Tokyo 2020 gold med­allists France-based players Sireli Maqala and Aminiasi Tuimaba.

“Sireli Maqala is still very young, with a lot of experience, a very pro­fessional character, great attitude, and he works hard on his game. “Similar for Mini (Tuimaba) more strength and depth in the outside back area where we got some talent but necessarily experience for some big tournament like this.”

“It’s one that’s alluded. I think over the years, is it a big task? It’s always a big task,” he said.

The side will train in England two weeks and will have pre-Common­wealth Games matches against Ja­maica, China and British Army sides.

Asked if his side is hungry for gold, he said: “I would say, very hungry, it’s a new challenge. They broke history when they first won the gold in Rio and rewrote history in Tokyo.

Feedbacks: sereana.salalo@fijisun.com.fj



Fijisun Ad Space


Get updates from the Fiji Sun, handpicked and delivered to your inbox.


By entering your email address you're giving us permission to send you news and offers. You can opt-out at any time.


Fiji Sun Instagram
Subscribe-to-Newspaper