Rugby | SPORTS

Fiji Or Australia, Api To Decide

Panthers hooker Apisai Koroisau will be asked to decide his World Cup alle­giance after being named in an extend­ed Fiji squad as they step up preparations for their opening game against Australia.
16 Sep 2022 15:30
Fiji Or Australia, Api To Decide
Apisai Koroisau.

Panthers hooker Apisai Koroisau will be asked to decide his World Cup alle­giance after being named in an extend­ed Fiji squad as they step up preparations for their opening game against Australia.

Koroisau has played 16 Tests for Fiji but after earning the NSW No.9 jersey for this season’s State of Origin series, he is also under consid­eration for a place in Mal Meninga’s 24-man Kangaroos squad.

Fiji coach Joe Rabele hopes Koroisau will play five-eighth or hooker at the World Cup but with the Bati squad to be announced on October 19 before assembling in Sydney on September 23 he wants an answer soon.

“I know that he has some interest to play for the Kangaroos, but the door is still open for Api Koroisau,” Rabele had said in a press con­ference in Suva.

“Hopefully he will get back to me because we will send invitation letters to all the clubs for players that we select (to confirm) if they want to be part of this programme, so we are waiting for them to respond.

“We are departing for England on September 25 so before we depart we need to select the best team for the World Cup.

“At the moment we have to submit this squad to the World Cup so when we submit the names we have to work with this squad.”

Koroisau was one of four players involved in NSW’s Origin campaign this sea­son named in the 33-man Bati squad, along with Eels prop Reagan Campbell-Gil­lard, Knights frontrower Jacob Saifiti and Dragons forward Tariq Sims.

Roosters winger Kevin Naiqama and Pan­thers second-rower Viliame Kikau will lead the Fiji team at the World Cup, with Eels winger Maika Sivo, Storm second-rower Tui Kamikamica and Knights prop Daniel Saifiti among the other big names.

Fiji play England in a World Cup warm-up match at Salford on October 7 ahead of their opening match against Australia in Leeds on October 15.

The other nations in Pool B are Scotland and Italy.

“Those players in the grand final will come after the grand final,” Rabele said.

“Our warm-up match is against England so that is where we want to set up our structures for the game against Australia.

“Hopefully all the best players will be avail­able for this World Cup campaign.”

The Bati have made the semi-finals of the last three World Cups and are looking to go one step further and qualify for the final at Old Trafford on November 19.

Feedbacks: simione.haravanua@fijisun.com.fj



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