Flying Fijians Head Coach Simon Raiwalui says with a blockbuster line-up, the challenge in finding the best team to represent Fiji at the Rugby World Cup begins Monday on the island of Taveuni.
With the inclusion of the Fijian Drua players, Raiwalui said the quality of the side has rose to another level, and finding cohesion between the the Europe based players and Drua would be the focus for the next few days.
“The integration of the Drua has given us a good mix with the best of Europe and the best of the Drua,” Raiwalui told FijiLive.
“It is always going to be a challenge integrating that.”
“Part of the journey is taking ourselves back from the comforts of the Grand Pacific Hotel and Albert Park and not being seen.”
“We want to be seen, we want to be exposed, we want to be part of the community.”
“Allowing that connection with our players, them with each other and with the staff I am adamant we can get the job done,” he added.
Meanwhile, Flying Fijians had their first full session at Welagi Village ground with prop Eroni Mawi saying it was never easy.
The Saracens frontrower said after all the meet and greets over the weekend, it was great to get to work.
“The first day, its always tough,” Mawi told FijiLive.
“Especially with the Drua boys and overseas lad together now, it was a good run and so far so good.”
The 27-year-old from Tovu Village in Lau said it was great move to come to Taveuni, especially with the players all bonding together.
“There is still a lot of work for us, it’s just coming together.
“We trust each other and you can bet the players are working hard away from all the hustle.
Mawi said he was focused on the task at hand especially gunning for that Rugby World Cup spot.
“I just have to make sure I do my job well and get that ticket to France.”
Meanwhile, Junior Flying Fijians coach Ifereimi Rawaqa has named his match day 23 to face Ireland in their final pool match of the World Rugby U20 Championship at Danie Craven Stadium, Stellenbosch.
Rawaqa has stuck to his guns by retaining the forward pack that lost 53-7 to England last Friday. He has made several positional changes to his backline.
The match kicks off at 11.30pm.
The side had lost 46-37 to Australia in their first match.
Team (1-15) – Moses McGoon, Joeli Nainoca, Breyton Legge, Mesake Vocevoce, Nalani May, Timoci Nakalevu, Moti Murray (C), Judah Saumaisue, Philip Baselala, Isaiah Ravula, Manieta Navonovono, Pateresio Finau, Waqa Nalaga, Sireli Masiwini, Peni Waqalala
Impact players (16-23) – Josh Kina, Marika Toga, Lasaro Vuluma, Semi Tokitani, Sakenasa Nalasi, Zach Kama, Frank Ralogaivau, Netava Saukuru.
SOURCE: FIJI LIVE/PACNEWS