The Flying Fijians arrived in Marseille on Monday night in high spirits and excited about the prospect of facing England in the quarterfinal which kicks off at 3am on Monday.
It’s certainly a very special moment for the group as after 16 years the Flying Fijians have progressed to the second stage of the Rugby World Cup.
With a short turnaround this week, the Flying Fijians will be looking forward to polishing up all concerned areas.
Head Coach Simon Raiwalui said England will come prepared for the match, especially after their recent defeat against Fiji in London in August.
He said “They play rugby to win. They’re very talented. They’ll put a lot of pressure on us at set-piece time as well.
Tactically, they’ll look to take advantage of some of the things we’ve been doing, so they’re a very good team. It’s going to be a big challenge.
Raiwalui said it’s a totally different match (to when Fiji beat England in August), playing a different team and there will be aspects of how they play that are similar but they will bring new stuff as well.
“It’s about us being efficient and doing the things we do well and giving ourselves the best chance to compete.
We’ve played the team, the boys are comfortable, it’s not the first time, so I think it will be a good match” he said.
Flying Fijians flanker, Levani Botia said they got to do fine-tuning for the quarterfinal, regroup and refocus again, and take it up to the next level.
He said “I think firstly England are a good team as well. They know how to get through the quarter-finals at the World Cup, and they know how to get in the semi. For me, this is the first time going into a quarter-final at a World Cup, it’s going to be a big match. Secondly, they want to be better than when we played them [in the summer].”
Meanwhile, France based AURA AÈRO has donated €25,000.00 (US$26,000) towards Flying Fijians intiative to raising awareness and funds for childhood cancer.
The generous donation was presented by Jeremy Caussade, President of the aerospace company, to Nacanieli Cawanibuka, the strength and conditioning coach of the Flying Fijians.