Fiji national rugby sevens team

The Fiji National Rugby Sevens Team has competed in the World Rugby Sevens Series, Rugby World Cup Sevens and the Olympics. Fiji won the gold medal in the inaugural rugby sevens at the Summer Olympics in 2016 in Brazil, the country's first Olympic medal in any event, and repeated as Olympic champions in the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, defeating New Zealand. Thus Fiji is the sole nation to have won Olympic gold in the sport.[1] They are the only country in the world to have won the Sevens Treble (the Olympics, Sevens Series, and World Cup), the three major achievements in Sevens. They have won multiple World Rugby Sevens Series and Rugby World Cup Sevens.

Republic of Fiji
Flag of Fiji.svg
UnionFiji Rugby Union
Captain(s)Josua Vakurunabili
Top scorerWaisale Serevi (1310)
Most triesJerry Tuwai (133)
Team kit
Change kit
World Cup Sevens
Appearances7 (First in 1993)
Best resultChampions (1997, 2005)
World Rugby series (2005–2006, 2014–2015, 2015–2016, 2018-2019)
Fiji national rugby sevens team
Medal record
Olympic Games
Gold medal – first place 2016 Rio de Janeiro Team
Gold medal – first place 2020 Tokyo Team
Rugby Sevens World Cup
Gold medal – first place 1997 British Hong Kong Team
Gold medal – first place 2005 Hong Kong Team
Bronze medal – third place 1993 Edinburgh Team
Bronze medal – third place 2001 Mar del Plata Team
Bronze medal – third place 2013 Moscow Team
World Games
Gold medal – first place 2001 Akita Team
Gold medal – first place 2005 Duisburg Team
Gold medal – first place 2009 Kaohsiung Team
Oceania Sevens Championship
Gold medal – first place 2014 Noosa Team
Gold medal – first place 2016 Suva Team
Gold medal – first place 2017 Suva Team
Gold medal – first place 2018 Suva Team
Gold medal – first place 2021 Townsville Team
Silver medal – second place 2011 Apia Team
Silver medal – second place 2013 Suva Team
Silver medal – second place 2019 Suva Team
Pacific Games
Gold medal – first place 1999 Santa Rita Team
Gold medal – first place 2003 Suva Team
Gold medal – first place 2007 Apia Team
Gold medal – first place 2015 Port Moresby Team
Gold medal – first place 2019 Apia Team
Silver medal – second place 2011 Noumea Team

Fiji Sevens is watched and enjoyed by fans around the world for its style of play — the "Flying Fijians" play with Fijian flair.[2] Their passing and offloads can be unorthodox for traditional rugby coaching, and more similar to basketball style.[3]

HistoryEdit

The International Rugby Board (IRB) expanded the sevens rugby competition to become a series of 11 tournaments around the world. The debt the FRU incurred from the 2000 sevens series was significant. At the end of December 2000, the FRU was burdened with accumulated losses of F$933,306. Fiji appealed to the IRB for funding, arguing that the sevens tournament was built around Fiji and they would not be able to participate without such funding. From that appeal flowed participation funds that enabled the islands teams to play in the World Sevens Series fully funded. By the end of November 2001, the FRU was sitting on a surplus of F$560,311 compared with the previous year's net loss of F$675,609.

The FRU again ran out of money in 2013 to support the national sevens team. The IRB had temporarily suspended funding due to concerns with FRU financial management and governance. The head coach went unpaid for months, another staff was terminated, and the team lacked funds for basic supplies such as rugby balls and bottled water.[4]

Waisale Serevi is highly regarded as the best player ever in sevens rugby.[citation needed] Nicknamed the "maestro", played in this side from 1989 to 2006 leading them to countless tournament victories, two Sevens World Cups in 1997 and 2005.

World Rugby Sevens SeriesEdit

Summary
Rank Times Seasons
1st 4 2005-06, 2014–15, 2015–16, 2018-2019
2nd 6 1999-2000, 2004–05, 2006–07, 2008–09, 2011–12, 2017–18
3rd 5 2000-01, 2002–03, 2012–13, 2013–14, 2016–17
4th 5 2001-02, 2003–04, 2007–08, 2009–10, 2010–11
Total 20

Fiji has won the World Rugby Sevens Series four times — first in 2005-06, and most recently in 2018-19. Fiji is one of only two teams — along with New Zealand — to finish in the top four of the World Series every season since its inception.[citation needed]

Sevens Series record
Year Position Rounds Points Most tries Most points
1999–00 2nd 10 180 Vilimoni Delasau (83)
2000–01 3rd 9 124
2001–02 4th 11 122
2002–03 3rd 7 94
2003–04 4th 8 84
2004–05 2nd 7 88
2005–06 1st 8 144
2006–07 2nd 8 128 William Ryder (416)
2007–08 4th 8 98 Emosi Vucago (25) Neumi Nanuku (146)
2008–09 2nd 8 102 Vereniki Goneva (24)
2009–10 4th 8 108 William Ryder (166)
2010–11 4th 8 122 Seremaia Burotu (29) Emosi Vucago (195)
2011–12 2nd 9 161 Joeli Lutumailagi (28) Metuisela Talebula (271)
2012–13 3rd 9 121 Samisoni Viriviri (29) Joji Baleviani Raqamate (247)
2013–14 3rd 9 144 Samisoni Viriviri (52) Samisoni Viriviri (260)
2014–15 1st 9 164 Savenaca Rawaca (42) Osea Kolinisau (312)
2015–16[5] 1st 10 181 Savenaca Rawaca (35) Vatemo Ravouvou (287)
2016–17 3rd 10 150
2017–18 2nd 10 180 Eroni Sau (37) Amenoni Nasilasila (316)
2018–19 1st 10 186 Aminiasi Tuimaba (46)
Total 4 Titles 176 2681 Nasoni Roko (125) Waisale Serevi (1,310)

Quadrennial tournamentsEdit

Summer OlympicsEdit

 
Fiji teams at the 2020 Summer Olympics
Olympic Games record
Year Round Pos Pld W L D Most tries Qualifying
  2016[6] Final 1st 6 6 0 0 J. Tuisova (5) Finished first at the 2014–15 World Series
  2020 Final 1st 6 6 0 0 Jiuta Wainiqolo (5) Finished first at the 2018–19 World Series
Total 2 Titles 2/2 12 12 0 0
Olympic Games History
2016 Pool stage   Fiji 40 – 12   Brazil Win
  Fiji 21 – 14   Argentina Win
  Fiji 24 – 19   United States Win
Quarterfinals   Fiji 12 – 7   New Zealand Win
Semifinals   Fiji 20 – 5   Japan Win
Final   Fiji 43 – 7   Great Britain Win
2020 Pool stage   Fiji 24 – 19   Japan Win
  Fiji 28 – 14   Canada Win
  Fiji 33 – 7   Great Britain Win
Quarterfinals   Fiji 19 – 0   Australia Win
Semifinals   Fiji 26 – 14   Argentina Win
Final   Fiji 27 – 12   New Zealand Win
World Cup Sevens record
Year Round Position Played Won Lost Drew Most tries Most points
  1993 Semifinals 3rd 9 7 2 0
  1997 Finals 1st 7 7 0 0 M. Vunibaka (12) W. Serevi (117)
  2001 Semifinals 3rd 7 6 1 0
  2005 Finals 1st 8 8 0 0
  2009 Quarterfinals 5th 4 3 1 0
  2013 Semifinals 3rd 6 4 2 0
  2018 Semifinals 4th 4 2 2 0
  2022 Qualified
Total 2 Titles 8/8 45 37 8 0 M. Vunibaka (23) W. Serevi (297)

Commonwealth GamesEdit

Tournament VictoriesEdit

PlayersEdit

Current squadEdit

Fiji team for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics

  1. Kalione Nasoko
  2. Josua Vakurunabili
  3. Meli Derenalagi
  4. Iosefo Masi
  5. Asaeli Tuivuaka
  6. Semi Radradra
  7. Vilimoni Botitu
  8. Waisea Nacuqu
  9. Napolioni Bolaca
  10. Jiuta Wainiqolo
  11. Aminiasi Tuimaba
  12. Jerry Tuwai (c)

Former squadsEdit

Player recordsEdit

The following section lists player records from the World Rugby Sevens Series. Players in bold are still active.

Former playersEdit

In addition to the players listed above, other notable players include:

Head coachesEdit

  • Gareth Baber (2016–present) - Baber has won the most tournaments by a Fiji 7s coach and has coached the side to their 4th World Series Title in 2019. In addition, Baber also coached the Fiji 7s side to victory by bringing the country's second gold medal at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
  • Ben Ryan (2013–16) - Ryan coached the Fiji 7s side to 2 back-to-back world series titles and the country's first gold medal at the 2016 Rio Olympics.
  • Waisale Serevi (2005–07; 2008–09) — Serevi coached/played in the side from 2005-2007 guiding Fiji to their first World Sevens Series title in the 2005/2006 season.
  • Etuwate Waqa
  • Ratu Kitione Vesikula
  • Alifereti Dere (2010–13)
  • Pauliasi Tabulutu (2004–06)
  • Rupeni Ravonu
  • Peni Veidreyaki
  • Alifereti Cawanibuka
  • Josateki Sovau
  • Tomasi Cama (2001)
  • Sanivalati Laulau
  • Tevita Wainiqolo

See alsoEdit

BibliographyEdit

  • McLaren, Bill A Visit to Hong Kong in Starmer-Smith, Nigel & Robertson, Ian (eds) The Whitbread Rugby World '90 (Lennard Books, 1989)

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Fiji beats New Zealand to clinch back-to-back Olympic titles". AP. 27 July 2021. Retrieved 28 July 2021.
  2. ^ "Rugby Sevens final: Team GB thrashed 43-7 as Fiji win their first-ever Olympic medal", Telegraph, Daniel Schofield, 12 August 2016.
  3. ^ "Q&A: Ben Ryan on life after becoming an Olympic legend – and Fijian chief – as coach of the island’s gold-medal rugby team", South China Morning Post, James Porteous, 15 October 2016.
  4. ^ “No Money, No Problem for Fiji Rugby Sevens Team”, New York Times, Emma Stoney, March 28, 2014.
  5. ^ “Fiji secure back-to-back titles after day one in London”, Telegraph, Oliver Pickup, 21 May 2016.
  6. ^ “Fiji storms to sevens gold, claiming first-ever Olympic medal”, Australian Broadcasting Corporation, 12 August 2016.
  7. ^ “A potted history of sevens at the Commonwealth Games”, WorldRugby.org, 6 April 2018.
  8. ^ “Fiji suspended from 2010 Commonwealth Games”, Herald Sun, Julie Tullberg, October 12, 2009.
  9. ^ “Fiji drops Games boycott threat”, news.com.au, March 27, 2014.
  10. ^ “Fiji storms to sevens gold, claiming first-ever Olympic medal”, Australian Broadcasting Corporation, 12 August 2016.
  11. ^ "How Fiji Sevens’ Waisale Serevi and his band of ‘schoolchildren’ took the Hong Kong 1997 World Cup home", South China Morning Post, Sam Agars, 18 July 2018.
  12. ^ "Fiji storm to victory in Oceania Sevens in Noosa with victory over New Zealand in the final", Ultimate Rugby Sevens, Nick Jordan, 4 October 2014.
  13. ^ WorldRugby.org, updated 5 April 2020
  14. ^ WorldRugby.org

External linksEdit