Fiji 7s

Fiji Rugby names squads for Commonwealth Games Sevens

The men's Sevens squad consists of six Olympic Gold medalists plus several from this year's World Rugby Sevens Series team.

Of those travelling, five were part of the Commonwealth Games in Australia four years ago.

Meanwhile, women's Sevens coach Saiasi Fuli has named a team that includes 10 bronze medalists from the Tokyo Olympic Games.

Veteran forward Rusila Nagasau will captain the side.

Men's coach Ben Gollings said he's confident for the Games with the talent he has been able to draw on.

Coaching opportunities emerge for former Fiji sevens stars

The Fiji Rugby Union announced on Monday that 2005 Sevens World Cup winner Viliame Satala and two-time Olympian and gold medal winner Jerry Tuwai will be part of a new coaching set-up, with Englishman Ben Gollings.

Satala, known as 'The Stretcher' during his playing days because of his bone-crunching tackles will focus on the forwards, skills and support with talent identification and mentoring of players.

While Tuwai will take on the role of player/coach to develop his coaching.

Semi Kunatani likely to return to Fiji 7s

Gollings said the 2016 Olympic gold medalist still has the stamina with double Olympic gold medalist, Jerry Tuwai sharing similar sentiments.

Despite mostly playing fifteens for the past five years, Gollings said he believes Kunatani can do it again in 7s.

Coach Ben Gollings officially meets his Fiji 7s players

Gollings visited the team in camp and was briefed by the interim head coach Saiasi Fuli on the training programmes and progress so far as the team prepares for the Malaga 7s in Spain.

Gollings said the first week is all about observing the players and seeing how the training programme is in order to analyze what needs to be done.

O'Connor calls for patience as Gollings heads to Fiji as the new sevens head coach

Gollings is the third successive overseas coach to hold the position with the previous two – Ben Ryan and Gareth Baber – having guided the squad to gold medal success at the Olympic Games in Rio and Japan.

O’Connor told The Fiji Times that most of the applicants for the head coach job were expatriates and said: “About 30 applicants were received and mostly expatriates. We shortlisted seven and from the FRU’s point of view, we appointed the person on merit and being the best person for the job based on the outcome of the interview and so forth.”

Ben Gollings is new Fiji 7s rugby coach

This was confirmed by the Fiji Rugby Union on Friday.

The 41-year-old featured in 70 tournaments on the IRB World Sevens Series, and is the leading all-time point scorer.

In late 2012, Gollings took up a 7s coaching role in Sri Lanka and currently continues to mentor the Tuskers.

Gollings will head to Fiji on January 5 where he will attend the Fiji Rugby Super Sevens Series before leading the national squad to the Malaga tournament in Spain.

Gareth Baber to leave role as Fiji 7s coach

The Welshman took charge of the team at the start of 2017 and guided Fiji to the World Series title in 2018/19, a Commonwealth Games silver medal on the Gold Coast and Olympic gold in Tokyo.

He was offered a contract extension through to the 2024 Paris Olympics but said he wanted to pursue coaching opportunties in the 15-a-side game.

"It is with a heavy heart that I have to inform Fiji Rugby and the people of Fiji that I will not be accepting the contract offer to coach the Fijian 7s Team to the next Olympic Games," he said.

Offer on table for Welsh Olympic mastermind

However, Fiji Union chief executive officer John O’Connor said that while the board had endorsed the Welshman’s contract to be extended the final decision would be Baber’s.

“The FRU board has endorsed an extension of Gareth’s contract to continue as the head coach for the men’s 7s team to the next Olympics,” O’Connor told FijiTimes.

Olympics Sevens gold medal winners Fiji arrived home

The team returned home without their coach Gareth Baber, who is travelling to the UK to visit his family.

Among the passengers on the flight this morning were several other Fijian athletes who participated in the Olympic Games in Tokyo.

All the travelers have been taken to a quarantine facility for 14 days of compulsory isolation and tests for COVID-19 as part of protocols.

Meanwhile, Police stopped the media from covering the team’s arrival at the airport this morning.

     

Fijians celebrate Olympic 7s gold medal win

Celebrations even took to the streets despite a curfew back in Fiji.

Pictures and videos of fireworks lighting the up skies and people blowing whistles and screaming around in their neighborhoods flooded social media platforms.

For Ratu Meli Derenalagi’s family in Nadi, it was a proud moment for them seeing their son score a try in the final and winning a gold medal.

Ratu Vuniani told FBC News that for his son to also score the first try during the gold medal game is something that he will never forget.