Botitu released, Yato out

June 19, 2024 3:24 pm

France based Vilimoni Botitu is the only player in Europe released so far for national duties.

This was confirmed today by Head Coach Mick Byrne during a zoom call with the media.

The Olympic gold medallist is expected to be a sure starter for the side when they take on Barbarians this weekend.

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One of the reasons many players are not released is because this week’s match is outside the World Rugby Regulation 9 window which deals with availability of players.

Byrne also says that Peceli Yato is out of the squad due to an injury.

With the unavailability of many overseas players, it’s certain the match day 23 this week will be made of Fijian Drua reps.

Even some players who are not in the Flying Fijians squad released last week will travel with the side to London.

Byrne says the players include Taniela Rakuro, Apisalome Vota, Emosi Tuqiri, Samu Tawake and Waqa Nalaga.

Meanwhile, Waratahs utility Vuate Karawalevu is another player not in the squad that’s been approached and arrangements are being made for him to join the squad in England.

The Flying Fijians play Barbarians at 4:15am on Sunday.

You can watch it LIVE on FBC Sports.