Fijiana coach Seruvakula names his maiden squad for England match


Fijiana 15’s Head Coach Senirusi Seruvakula has named his maiden 23-member squad to face England in their debut Rugby World Cup match on Saturday at Eden Park in Auckland, New Zealand.

Seruvakula has selected the best available players to take on the opponent who has more test matches, experience, and wins in their bag compared to Fijiana.

Brumbies Loosehead Prop Iris Verebalavu will start in the front row together with prominent Hooker Vika Matarugu while making her debut will be Queensland Reds Tighthead Prop Siteri Rasolea.

Captain Sereima Leweniqila shifts from her usual number 8 position to locks and will partner with Asiante Serevi.

Among the experienced players, 19-year-old Netherland-based Sulita Waisega starts at Blindside Flanker together with Ema Adivitaloga at Openside. Karalaini Naisea is at number 8.

Seruvakula said “We coaches have selected a strong side to play against England because we believe they are mostly a forwards-oriented team therefore we are fielding our best available players in this area.”

The backline is expected to bring in more Fijian flair with three Fijian 7s players making the cut into the run-on team.

Lavena Cavuru and Merewalesi Rokouono will share the halves position while Sesenieli Donu and Raijieli Laqeretabua will control the play from the midfield.

Inform winger Vitalina Naikore is on the left side while Alowesi Nakoci is the right winger. Roela Radiniyavuni will take control of the team from the fullbacks position.

Seruvakula said they have been gelling well and have a better game understanding in terms of set pieces and scrums.

“Last week we had a scrimmage with Canada. There was a lot of improvement in the scrums and line-outs so we believe that we have made the right selection for our first game” he said.

Seruvakula added that England will certainly come with guns blazing but his side is ready to face all the hurdles and give their best shot on the day.

“They have the confidence and are focused on the job ahead plus any team can be beaten on the day. We believe the team we selected is a mixture of experience and young players full of talents and we expect to give a strong performance against England” said Seruvakula.

Fijiana takes on England at 3.45pm FJT on Saturday.

Fijiana 23-member squad V England

Iris Verebalavu
Vika Maturugu
Siteri Rasolea*
Asinate Serevi
Sereima Leweniqila {c}
Sulita Waisega
Ema Adivitaloga
Karalaini Naisewa
Lavena Cavuru
Merewalesi Rokouono
Vitalina Naikore
Sesenieli Donu
Rajieli Laqeretabua
Alowesi Nakoci
Roela Radiniyavuni


Bitila Tawake
Bulou Vasuturaga
Mereoni Vonosere
Merevesi Ofakimalino
Raijieli Daveua
Akosita Ravato
Ana Maria Roqica
Melaia Matanatabu