Flying Fijians edge Italy in Suva
June 17, 2017 4:29 am
The Vodafone Flying Fijians defeated Italy 22-19 at Suva’s ANZ Stadium today.
Fiji scored three tries to Italy’s one, in a tightly contested encounter.
The home side started well with Eroni Vasiteri crossing the line, after some good work from set play.
Jale Vatubua scored his first try for the Flying Fijians as Fiji led 14-9 at half-time.
Italian fly half, Tommaso Allan, kept his side in the match with three penalties in the first half.
Fijian winger, Vereniki Goneva opened the scoring in the second spell with a try from an intercept from inside his own half.
Fiji was reduced to 14-men after number eight Nemani Nagusa was yellow carded for an illegal tackle in the 52nd minute.
Italy took full advantage as Maxime Mbanda scored from a rolling maul to close the gap to 19-16.
Allan converted another penalty in the 77th minute to tie the scores at 19-all.
Ben Volavola won the match for Fiji with a drop goal after the hooter.
Fiji’s Joeli Veitiyaki made his debut off the bench in the last quarter.
The Italians dominated scrums and line-outs and those would be an area of concern for the coaching panel before the test against Scotland next week.
Fiji lost four of their own line-outs and lost possession on numerous occasions at scrum time.
Fiji hosts Scotland at 2.30pm at Suva’s ANZ Stadium next Saturday.