Flying Fijians

Flying Fijians seek big improvements

The Pacific Nations Cup holders opened their Northern Tour with a 19-10 defeat by Italy in Catania at the weekend, who the home side avenging their loss in Suva in June.

The result denied Fiji a chance to overtake France in the test rankings and coach John McKee said they struggled for cohesion with the squad having come together at short notice from all corners of the globe.

"We had some good individual performances but probably our key combinations didn't operate as well as we needed to to put the Italians under any sort sustained pressure," he said.

Flying Fijians challenged to reach new level

The Flying Fijians won their third straight Pacific Nations Cup title in July and secured the Oceania One berth for the 2019 World Cup, putting them in Pool D alongside Australia, Wales, Georgia and a qualifier.

The ninth-ranked Fijians also chalked up major victories on home soil against Six Nations duo Italy and Scotland but McKee is wanting to see that form replicated on the road.

"We set ourselves a good high benchmark across those tests earlier in the year but the important thing now is to step up to another level in November," he said.

Flying Fijians winger Tuisova to start from the bench in Samoa

The France-based winger, who had been on destructive mode since appearing for Fiji in the ongoing World Rugby Test series, is expected to be an impact player in the team's campaign to win the PNC.

Tonga leads the tally after two games.

Fiji Times reports a win this weekend for the Fijians will ensure we retain the annual title.

Tuisova's 7s Rio Olympics teammate and off-load king Leone Nakarawa is expected to be on his 'A'-game after showing A-grade elusive ball handling skills against the Ikale Tahi in Nuku'alofa last weekend.

Flying Fijians clinch World Cup berth

The visitors trailed 10-3 with 27 minutes remaining at a sold-out Teufaiva Stadium but cut the deficit to two points with a try from Leone Nakarawa before Ben Volavola slotted two penalty goals in the final quarter of an hour to secure a hard fought win.

Flying Fijians coach John McKee said securing the top qualifying berth was their key focus this year.

McKee names powerful and experienced Flying Fijians side to take on Tonga

McKee has stressed how important this match would be for them and that they are expecting a very physical encounter with Tonga.

He says this match against Tonga is very important for them in terms of their Rugby World Cup qualification and to achieve their goal of finishing as Oceania No 1.

McKee says Tonga played very well in winning against Samoa last week which will give them a lot of confidence coming into this match and they will backed by a very loud local crowd.

Flying Fijians name four debutants to face Scotland

Olympic Sevens gold medallist Josua Tuisova, who plies his trade at French giants Toulon, has been selected on the right wing, while Mosese Ducivaki, Sikeli Nabou and John Stewart are all included on the bench for the match at ANZ Stadium.

There are five furtherchanges to the starting fifteen with Sunia Koto, Tevita Cavubati, Peceli Yato, Patrick Osborne and Albert Vulivuli also getting an opportunity.

Discipline Critical’ for Flying Fijians

Matson said this was one area which let the team down in the first two games of the 2015 Rugby World Cup – against England and Australia.

“Discipline is critical at this level. You cannot get away with things at Rugby World Cup,” the former Fijian and New Zealand international said.

“Discipline has let us down against the big teams. They consequently lead six to nine points and we end up chasing the game,” Matson said.

He predicts the Fijians would provide a tough challenge against Wales in Cardiff on Friday.