Fiji coach responds as team rocked by shock retirements
Fiji head coach John McKee is confident his squad has enough strength in depth to deal with the decision by Montpellier wings Timoci Nagusa and Nemani Nadolo to quit international rugby just eight months from the start of the World Cup in Japan.
McKee is convinced that there is plenty of competition for places in a squad that stunned France by winning in Paris in November and will be a serious threat to World Cup pool opponents Wales, Australia, Georgia and Uruguay.
McKee said :“As good a players as both Timoci and Nemani are there is of course no guarantee that they would make the final selection for RWC. We now have a very good depth of players who can play well at the highest level of the game in Test Match Rugby and a lot of competition across the team to make the final selection for RWC 2019.
“It was with disappointment that I received the news that 2 experienced Flying Fijians, Timoci Nagusa (26.test caps) and Nemani Nadolo (30 test caps), have announced their retirement from International Rugby. I had been in personal contact with both players prior to the announcements over recent days and fully understand and respect their decisions.
Two big stars for Fiji, Timoci Nagusa and Nemani Nadolo have announced their retirement from international rugby.
— Fiji Rugby Union (@fijirugby) January 31, 2019
“This (2019 )is a very important year for the Flying Fijians and there will be a lot of hard work and commitment required to ensure that the final selected squad is fully prepared to put in our best performance at RWC 2019. I thank these players for their contribution to the Flying Fijians over the years both on and off the field through their exceptional play & team leadership.”
Nagusa said: “I’ve had the greatest moments, played with so many talented players. I was never a keeper for The Jersey, having that palm logo on my heart, I run onto the field for my family and everyone that have always supported me”.
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