Baber steps down as national 7s team coach

Tokyo Olympics gold medal winning coach Gareth Baber. Photo: FRU

National men’s sevens coach Gareth Baber has stepped down from the Fijian men’s coaching role and will venture into his coaching career as a 15s mentor, announced today by Fiji Rugby Union.

“We totally respect the decision made by Gareth and thank him for his service to Fiji Rugby and to Fiji. We are all proud of Gareth achievement culminating in the gold medal defense at the Tokyo Olympics 2020,” FRU chief executive John O’Connor said.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Fiji Rugby Union, HSBC World Rugby Sevens series, Personalities

Fiji win gold in Tokyo

Team Fiji rugby 7s halfback Team Waisea Nacuqu attacks against New Zealand. Graphics: Fiji Rugby Union

Fiji beat New Zealand 27-12 in the gold medal match at Tokyo Stadium to secure their second successive men’s Olympic sevens gold medal.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Fiji, Fiji Rugby Union, Olympics

Kuruvoli, Volavola may combine again in second Test against All Blacks

Flying Fijians Manasa Mataele (left) and Eneriko Buliruarua try stopping a grubber from All Blacks inside centre David Havili in Fiji’s 23-47 loss at Dunedin. Photo: FRU

With three Australian halves not confirmed to make it in time, Flying Fijians head coach Vern Cotter may have to stick with last week’s combination of Simione Kuruvoli and Ben Volavola in the second Test against the All Blacks on Saturday.

Speaking in a Fiji Rugby Union media Zoom conference from Hamilton this afternoon Cotter said the team would have to adapt if the players from Australia didn’t make it, the team was prepared to do the best they could with what was available to them.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under All Blacks, Fiji Rugby Union, Flying Fijians, New Zealand

The ‘ludicrous’ build-up facing Fiji as they bid to defend Olympic gold

Semi Kunitani . . . Olympic champion

Coach Gareth Baber and his Fiji players are enduring the most “ludicrous” build-up ever to an Olympic Games that will mean his players will have been away from their families for 18 weeks by the time they complete their sevens gold medal defence in Japan.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Cathay Pacific/HSBS Hong Kong Sevens, Coach, Olympics, Tokyo Olympics

All Blacks 7s win all six matches against Australia in warm-up for Olympics

Ngarohi McGarvey-Black scored twice for All Blacks sevens in their first win against Australia on Sunday. Photo: Hannah Peters/Getty Images

The All Blacks sevens were unbeaten after five matches and hammered Australia in Sunday’s first clash.

The All Blacks sevens hit Australia for six with a clean sweep in matches against their trans-Tasman rivals across three days of their Auckland warm-up tournament for the Tokyo Olympics.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under All Blacks, Australia, Australia, New Zealand 7s, New Zealand, Olympics, Olympics warm up

Flying Fijians need to be 100% against the Kiwis: Cotter

Maori All Blacks Sean Wainui is tackled by Fiji Airways Flying Fijians flanker Semi Kunatani in the Fijian 27-10 win at the ANZ Stadium in Suva on July 15, 2019. Picture: JONA KONATACI <jkonataci@fijitimes.com.fj>

National coach Vern Cotter said the Flying Fijians to face New Zealand in seven weeks needed to be 100 percent in the unprecedented  two Test series against the New Zealand All Blacks.

“Our players who will be joining from Europe need to be aware that this is no small challenge but it’s a massive one as we get two test matches against the All Blacks in New Zealand so we know how challenging it’s going to be,” he said.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under All Blacks, ANZ Stadium Suva, Europe Fiji players, Fiji Rugby Union, Fiji Times, Flying Fijians, New Zealand

Tuisova’s switch from 13 to 8 does trick for Lyon


The Top 14 have shared on Twitter the dalliance of Josua Tuisova at No8 for Lyon last weekend. The Fijian, who has developed a fearsome reputation across Europe as a powerful winger or outside centre, briefly packed down at No8 for his club against Toulouse last Saturday.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Europe Fiji players, Top 14

Naqalevu opens floodgates for Clermont

Clermont’s flanker Peceli Yato attacks against Bayonne with centre Apisai Naqalevu in support. Photo: ASM Clermont.

Former national sevens player Apisai Naqalevu opened the floodgates for Clermont in a 73-3 rout of Bayonne in the Top 14 match.
The Naitasiri native’s try in the 12th minute was the first of 10 converted tries for the yellow and blue early this morning.
Flying Fijian loose forward Peceli Yato scored a brace in the 42nd and 68th minutes.
Clermont flyhalf Camille Lopez hauled a personal tally of 23 points, converting the 10 tries and opened with a penalty in the ninth minute.
The other seven tries were scored by lock Paul Jedrasiak (26m), left winger Samuel Ezeala (47m), halfback Morgan Parra (64m), number 8 Fritz Lee (71m), Jean-Pascal Barraque (73m), winger Peter Betham (78m) and full back Kotaro Matsushima (80m).
Bayonne’s only points came through a penalty by fullback Gaetan Germain in the 26th minute

Clermont team: 1.Ravai, 2.Fourcade, 3.Ojovan, 4.Jedrasiak, 5.Vahaamahina, 6.Yato, 7. Cancoriet, 8.Lee, 9.Parra, 10.Lopez (cap), 11 .Ezeala, 12.Moala, 13.Naqalevu, 14.Betham, 15.Matsushima

Replacements: 16.Pélissié, 17.Beria, 18.Everson, 19.Van Tonder, 20.Viallard, 21.Nanai-Williams, 22.Barraque, 23.Slimani.

The Bayonne team: 1.Cormenier, 2.Van Jaarsveld, 3.Nixon, 4.Pyle, 5.Mikautadze, 6.Monribot, 7.Hourcade (cap), 8.Amosa, 9.Zabalza, 10.Luc, 11.Duhau, 12.Hingano, 13.Muscarditz, 14.Ravouvou, 15.Germain.

Substitutes: 16.Delonca, 17.Pelo, 18.Heguy, 19.Taofifenua, 20.Rouet, 21.Fajardo, 22.Costosseque, 23.Tatafu

Leave a comment

Filed under Europe Fiji players, Top 14

Castres loses to Racing 92

Castres Olympique inside centre Vilimoni Botitu offloads in the match against Racing 92. Photo: Castres Olympique.

Flying Fijian winger Filipo Nakosi scored the first try for Castres Olympique just before halftime to cut the deficit to 10-13.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Europe Fiji players, Top 14

Matavesi excited for the challenge of facing the ‘best player in the world’ Radradra

Flying Fijian utility back Josh Matavesi.

Matavesi is relishing testing himself against ‘the best player in the world’ tomorrow morning as Bath Rugby travel the short distance down the road to take on derby rivals Bristol Bears.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Europe Fiji players, Gallagher Premiership