Consider other factors too before selecting a coach:PM

March 1, 2024 1:35 pm

Prime Minister and former national rep Sitiveni Rabuka hopes decision-makers will pay attention to some factors outside rugby before selecting a national coach.

The head of government made the comment after FBC Sports asked him about the performances of the Fiji Airways Men’s 7s Coach Ben Gollings and the team as they’re winless after 18 tournaments in the World Series.

The Prime Minister says there’s more to coaching than skills training or skills development.

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He adds there’s a lot about off-the-field engagement between coaches and players.

PM Rabuka says a coach should know how to develop off-the-field morale, and psyching of players or even nations as they differ from other nations and ethnic groups as well.

According to the PM, these are some key issues that should be considered before confirming a national coach.

‘You may be the best provincial coach in New Zealand or best international coach in other parts of the world whether you can just bring that capability and use it for the coaching of Fijian players playing for the Fiji team is another question’.

Minister for Youth and Sports Jese Saukuru says the Fiji Rugby Union should make the right decision.

‘It’s about time we put all hands on deck, it’s time that everyone must come together to salvage the situation’.

The Minister also says they respect FRU and don’t want to interfere with them.

However, he says FRU must understand government is pouring quite a significant sum of money into supporting rugby and they expect some positive results out of it.

Gollings has failed to deliver a Cup title after 18 tournaments in the World Series.
Saukuru says we’re coming towards the Olympics without a win which is a dangerous signal and the government is not taking it lightly.

He adds they expect outcomes as the government pays for expatriate coaches through the Fiji Sports Commission.

Coach Gollings says he understands the frustration due to the winless run but they’re close to achieving their target.

The Fiji 7s and Fijiana will be in action at the LA 7s this weekend.

Our Fijiana faces Brazil in their opening match at 1:14pm tomorrow then on Sunday, they’ll meet South Africa at 8:26am and New Zealand at 1:24 pm.

The Fiji men’s side will face Great Britain in its opening match tomorrow at 2:54pm.

On Sunday, they clash with Canada at 5:30am and France at 10:22am before the men’s cup quarterfinals begins at 3:26pm.

The semi-finals and final will be held on Monday.

You can watch the Fiji and Fijiana sides in action at the LA 7s live on FBC TV.