Voda­fone Fi­jian 7s bril­liance clinches ti­tle win over Samoa

Fiji Sun - - Front Page - JUS­TINE MANNAN

The Voda­fone Fi­jian 7sreps were a class above the rest of the field yes­ter­day at Suva’s ANZ Sta­dium. Their win over Pa­cific ri­vals Samoa in the Ocea­nia 7s fi­nal last night now serves as a per­fect plat­form in their build-up to de­fend their World Rugby Sevens Se­ries ti­tle. The Samoans were no push-over as they came back fight­ing in the sec­ond half. It took the bril­liant footwork of gold medal Olympian, Ki­tione Taliga, to re­lieve the pres­sure from the Samoan on­slaught and seal the tiltle for Fiji. The win is a cause for cel­e­bra­tion fol­low­ing the Voda­fone Fly­ing Fi­jians 7-40 beat­ing from the Bar­bar­ians yes­ter­day morn­ing in Belfast, North­ern Ire­land. Also, our Tele­com Fi­jian women’s 7s lost to a ram­pag­ing Aus­tralian out­fit, also Olympic gold medal­lists.

De­spite not win­ning any game in the Ocea­nia 7s Cham­pi­onship, Nauru is happy with their out­ing this year. A coun­try where AFL, basketball and weightlift­ing dom­i­nates, rugby is slowly draw­ing the in­ter­est of lo­cals. Team man­ager God­wyn De­bao said the tour­na­ment has been a ma­jor boost for the sport in their coun­try. “The Ocea­nia 7s has been re­ally great for the play­ers,” De­bao said “We just started rugby back in Nauru a cou­ple of years ago and it has been slowly build­ing. “There is a lot of im­prove­ment from this tour­na­ment com­pared to last year’s tour­na­ment and we are re­ally happy with that con­sid­er­ing all our play­ers are lo­cally based.

“Just be­ing here is a big boost for the team. Back home there is a lot of ex­cite­ment and cheer­ing, the peo­ple are happy with our per­for­mance. “We are hop­ing our boys par­tic­i­pa­tion in the tour­na­ment will draw in more in­ter­est from the lo­cals back home be­cause we can­not grow this sport on our own.

“We do not have proper fa­cil­i­ties so hope­fully things change with our par­tic­i­pa­tion here. “We will def­i­nitely take home the ex­pe­ri­ence that we have gained here and hope to build up on it.

“So hope­fully, next year, we can come back big­ger and stronger.” Nauru lost all four of their games to Pa­pua New Guinea (29-5), Fiji (73-0), Amer­i­can Samoa (17-5) and Tonga (34-5). Edited by Osea Bola

PIC­TURED: The Voda­fone Fi­jian 7s team cel­e­brate their win last night at the ANZ Sta­dium in Suva after beat­ing Samoa 28-19.

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