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Ben Gollings has degraded Fiji sevens squad claims ex wing

By Chris Jones
Terio Tamani of Fiji reacts after losing the 2024 Perth SVNS men's cup semi final match between Australia and Fiji at HBF Park on January 28, 2024 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Will Russell/Getty Images)

The latest failure by Ben Gollings to deliver an HSBC SVNS title at the Vancouver SVNS has seen another call for the head coach to be replaced with a claim he has “degraded” the team in the build-up to the defence of the Olympic Games gold medal in Paris this summer.

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Former Fiji rugby sevens wing Vilimoni Delasau has once again piled the pressure on Gollings by repeating his call for double Olympic gold medallist Jerry Tuwai to step in and coach the team to the Paris Olympic Games alongside former sevens captain Sireli Bobo. “I just saw the news this afternoon and it is really disappointing,” Delasau told the Fiji Sun.

“I don’t know if he [Gollings] was sent to degrade our sevens [rugby] standard or what. I’m tired of what they [Fiji Rugby Union] are doing. They are keeping him [Gollings] there when he is not performing.

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France 7s captain Paulin Riva on Antoine Dupont joining the 7s squad

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France 7s captain Paulin Riva on Antoine Dupont joining the 7s squad

“Sireli Bobo has proven himself time and again. I believe Jerry Tuwai should take the team to the Olympics. I don’t know if Jerry is ready to play as I believe he’s ready to coach. I think he’s past his prime as a player and I believe he will be one of the best coaches for our sevens team.”

His call for a major change in the coaching set-up comes after the Fiji men’s sevens team lost in the cup quarterfinal of the Vancouver SVNS. The Fijians were beaten 21-19 by New Zealand and earlier on they went down 24-19 to eventual winners Argentina in their final pool match.

Argentina won their third consecutive men’s title with 36-12 victory over New Zealand in Vancouver while France took bronze which means Fiji have slipped to third in the overall table behind Argentina and Ireland.

The fifth round of SVNS Series 2024 takes place in Los Angeles on 1-3 March with Fiji in the same pool as Great Britain, France and Canada.

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