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Smith impressed with Fijian flair

May 26, 2012 1:00 am

An all-local Fiji Warriors attacking performance during the Pacific Rugby Cup in Australia and New Zealand has been a revelation.

This is backed by a strong and confident statement by IRB Oceania Development Manager, Lee Smith who witnessed them play in New Zealand earlier this year.

“It’s the first time in many years I’ve seen the Fiji attack play like I remember Fiji attacks being. With support directly behind the man and offloading in the tackle after stepping into the tackler and to me that was a good omen."

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On Monday Flying Fijians coach Inoke Male will name his 24-member team for the Pacific Nations Cup to Japan.

Before final selections, the current squad of 28 players which features 10 overseas-based reps will be busy finding combinations.

“When there’s only two Fijians in an overseas team, you have to play like the other 13 which I’d like to think doesn’t take away from their ability to play like Fijians when they return home.”

Fiji has the foundation of building towards the next World Cup but after a poor outing in New Zealand last year, it’s a long road ahead with qualifiers to tackle first.

“I think the big thing is not being erratic in your selections. If you show faith in someone give them the chance to play a number of games and then if they fail, fine but don’t have one off wonders.”

Fiji’s return to running rugby was proven by the Warriors earlier this year.

Certainly the return of Fijian flair to 15s rugby will bring excitement to the PNC next month.

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