Young play­ers to show qual­ity when un­der pres­sure and abil­ity to play in sev­eral po­si­tions.

Fiji Sun - - SPORT - SIMIONE HARAVANUA Edited by Leone Cabenatabu­a Feed­back: simione.haravanua@fi­jisun.

Don’t be sur­prised if new play­ers are play­ing for the Fiji Air­ways Fi­jian 7s team in the re­main­ing tour­na­ments of the 2019/20 HSBC World Sevens Se­ries.

With the Tokyo Olympic Games moved to July 23- Au­gust 8, next year, the onus is on head coach Gareth Baber to work on his com­bi­na­tion.

Baber said the COVID-19 lock­down pe­riod gave mem­bers of the ex­tended train­ing squad time to train and prove their worth. “There are some young men who have been de­vel­oped here and are play­ing well for the War­riors, Drua, La­tui and the Un­der-20 teams,” he said.

“These are qual­ity play­ers like young Epeli Na­mua­mua (Momo). The other one I had spo­ken to is Ki­tione Salawa (Jnr) and Anasa Qarani­valu.”

Baber said the de­fer­ment of the Olympic Games had given him the chance to work with the young play­ers and gave them the much-needed ex­po­sure.

“Some of these play­ers have a chance to push them­selves for se­lec­tion. So what I want to see is the qual­ity in them when put un­der pres­sure in the sevens en­vi­ron­ment.”

The Welsh­man has also set his sights on play­ers that can play in more than one po­si­tion.

“There is al­ways po­ten­tial for some­one like Li­vai Ikanikoda, who is blessed with the fact that he can play in sev­eral po­si­tions in the backs and also I’ve seen him play­ing in the for­wards for Po­lice.

“It’s some­thing that we have used in our squad as well dur­ing train­ing and po­ten­tially at in­ter­na­tional tour­na­ments but we’ve got some very good for­wards.”

The re­turn of se­nior play­ers Kalione Na­soko and cap­tain, Paula Dranis­inukula from in­jury is a big lift to the squad as they would pro­vide competitio­n to the young play­ers.

“Meli Der­e­nalgi, Se­vu­loni Mo­ce­nacagi, Asaeli Tuiv­uaka, Jo­sua Vaku­ran­abili, the Tabu broth­ers, Apenisa Cakaubal­avu and Su­liano Vo­livoli are the other for­wards in the squad.

“We’ve good depth in our he added.

The se­ries gets un­der­way in Singapore on Oc­to­ber 10-11 and fol­lowed by the Hong Kong tour­na­ment from Oc­to­ber 16-18. for­wards,”

Photo: World Rugby

Fiji Air­ways Fi­jian 7s for­wards Asaeli Tuiv­uaka de­liv­ers a pass while Se­vu­loni Mo­ce­nacagi closes in dur­ing train­ing in Lon­don on May 19, 2019.

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