Ben Ryan legacy
Timoci Gaunavinaka, Nausori Congratulations to Samoa for a superb performance in Paris. You showed the world that we Pacific islanders can be ruthless to each other on the playing field, but off the field after the game we are all brothers.
If the Paris 7s has anything to show for Fiji, it is that we are truly on track for the Olympic gold. Australia, Wales and England will all come out firing on all barrels in London this weekend because it will be their last chance to test their “Rio probables” against the world’s best. If Fiji can just tame these three teams in pool play, then the 2016 IRB Sevens Series is ours. Jarred Hayne will provide the most exciting mix ever to our 7s squad and Ben has just placed his final piece of jigsaw into his extended training squad puzzle. In a training squad with names like Nakarawa, Tuisova, Rawaca, Kunatani, Kolinisau, Taliga, Jerry, Ravovou, Nasilasila, Jasa, Katonibau, Viriviri, Nayacalevu and now Haynes, Fiji looks like a team of bullies.
But Ben has said it right. If they are not fit and cannot gel together, then their big names don’t matter. Some may see it unfair to drop some local boys, but Rio is not a beauty pageant where “the fairest of them all” wins. It is a battlefield where only the strongest triumphs so only the strongest in all aspects of the battle must go.
It is starting to look obvious that Ben Ryan has been weaving something huge and very special to showcase. We can now see an unbelievable amount of hidden potential being silently collected and slowly groomed to peak and explode like a time bomb in Rio. Ben knows that we have won the Sevens World Cup and the IRB series before. Nothing less than the sparkle of Gold will impress the nation! But Ben has some aces up his sleeves too. He is not only targeting gold in Rio. He wants to win it in style and rewrite the history of the greatest 7s rugby victory of all time. This is one moment when he can etch his legacy and the world will remember him long after he is gone.