Editorial comment – Go Fiji, go
26 July, 2021, 7:15 pm
The stage is set for our foray into the Olympic Games 7s rugby competition.
Today we are scheduled to play two games, against hosts Japan, and Canada.
Then we are scheduled to play Great Britain tomorrow.
There is great interest in this event for the one reason that we are defending champions.
We are the defending gold medallists after that breathtaking victory in 2016, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
We went into the games as unknowns, and came off with so many positives, even anchoring a very powerful percentage on the Google search engine.
We came off on top of the world, earning rave reviews, and capturing the imagination of the sporting world.
We were on top of the world. We were the masters of the game, attracting millions of eye-balls, and inspiring may fans to embrace the game.
We catapulted a little known island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean onto the highest pedestal in global sports.
The global audience viewed the flair, flamboyance, and excitement of Fijian rugby 7s.
Never before had it seen big men in white literally dance all over the field with a little oval-shaped ball.
They tackled with enthusiasm, were assertive, confident and were simply breathtaking, displaying feats of magic coupled with controlled aggression and power, making the abbreviated version of the sport look quite beautiful.
Today, as we look ahead to the first match against Japan, we are reminded that we have received negative results for the past 20 weeks in as far as our COVID-19 tests go. That’s a good sign, and a reflection of the massive sacrifices by the national coach, Gareth Baber, and our team.
“We adopted a bubble policy where we look after each other and make sure that players understood the worth of keeping safe,” he said.
“Part of that was not seeing their families and it was really difficult for all of them but we have carried that on through our quarantine in Australia and on to the competition that we played in Australia.
“We were tested every day and then the challenge was coming to Japan and continuing that.
“We had no interaction with the public and coming to Tokyo not knowing what to expect was a big challenge.
“It takes a lot of work to ensure that you still able to function and do daily things and keeping your welfare where it needs to be and taking care of your training as well.
“It takes a great deal of effort, organisation and discipline on behalf of all the members of the group and we have managed it really well.”
As we count down to the first game, we wish our team the very best. Go Fiji, go.