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Major blow for Fiji Sevens as they lose Jerry Tuwai

By Ian Cameron
Jerry Tuwai of Team Fiji reacts on the final whistle following victory in the Rugby Sevens Men's Gold Medal match between New Zealand and Fiji on day five of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Tokyo Stadium on July 28, 2021 in Chofu, Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)

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Double Olympic Games gold medalist Jerry Tuwai has been ruled out of the Fiji Sevens squad for their HSBC World Seris tournaments in Toulouse and London.

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Tuwai has been ruled out through illness Head Coach Ben Gollings has confirmed.

“I want to support him have better preparation and as we build towards commonwealth games and World Cup he does not need to prove his quality whilst we look at players. He is on standby if we have any injuries,” said Gollings.

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Golling has named his final 13-member squad for the events, a roster which does include the return of former Harlequins back row Semi Kunatani to the team after a five-year absence.

“Semi is good for experience and has been working very hard to get this opportunity. He is great around the players and provides good leadership” said Gollings.

Kunatani is added to the forward pack which also includes Josua Vakurinabili, Joseva Talacolo, Tevita Daugunu, Elia Canakaivata and Jerry Matana.

Gollings has also called up Fijian Drua star Napolioni Bolaca, who has spent some time playing 15s this season’s Super Rugby Pacific.

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“Bolaca has been working hard with Fijian Drua and with us. I want to see him play. He’s a great addition to the squad. Obviously there’s adjustments but I’m sure he will adapt well.”

The Head Coach has kept his season and core players from the previous leg. After missing the previous leg due to injury, speedster Filipe Sauturaga and hard-hitting back Manueli Maisamoa have been added to the squad.

The Toulouse 7s will take place from May 21 to 23, while the London competition will take place on May 29 and 30.

Fiji Airways Fijian 7s Squad
Josua Vakurinabili
Joseva Talacolo
Elia Canakaivata
Tevita Daugunu {c}
Semi Kunatani
Jeremaia Matana
Pilipo Bukayaro
Waisea Nacuqu {v/c}
Napolioni Bolaca
Kaminieli Rasaku
Filipe Sauturaga
Manueli Maisamoa
Vuiviawa Naduvalo

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