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Monday, September 23rd, 2019

Sport: South Africa hard to catch – Fiji 7s coach

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by April 14, 2017 General

The Fiji Sevens coach concedes it will be hard to catch South Africa on the world series ladder, even if the Fijians continue their winning ways.

Fiji head into the Singapore sevens this weekend fresh off a comprehensive Hong Kong tournament victory.

The Fiji team celebrate a third consecutive Hong Kong title

Fiji won their first tournament of the season in Hong Kong Photo: World Rugby – Martin Seras Lima

Fiji are currently second on the series ladder with 122 points, with the Blitz Bokke 23 points ahead.

Teams receive 22 points a tournament win, the runner-up gets 19 and the third place team is awarded 17 points.

Gareth Baber said this means South Africa will have to drop their standards signifcantly for Fiji to have a chance.

“They have been a model of consistency throughout the series,” Baber said.

“England have had their moments, we have had our moments, the likes of America have had their moments as well.

“All I can do at the moment is just keep concentrating on getting performances out of the team,” he said.

The coach said there is a risk of “over-worrying” about the bigger picture.

” We concentrated simply on Hong Kong last weekend and we got ourselves a result,” Baber said.

Fiji is approaching the Singapore tournament in the same manner.

“We will see what the points system is at the end of that,” the Fiji coach said.

Although he admitted the Blitz Bokke would have to slip up.

“In terms of the consistency they bring, evey if they are not winning finals, they tend to be in them so that makes it difficult to catch them.”

Fiji will meet Canada, Russia and Baber’s former team Hong Kong in pool play.

Before he took the reins at Fiji in January, Baber was coach of Hong Kong.

However he said it’s just another game.

“The first game of any tournament is always a tough one as you don’t quite know where you are as you pit yourself against other teams,” Baber said.

“I will be conscious of it more in terms of more than just a tournamnet game than anything else.”

Hong Kong sevens coach Gareth Baber will take charge of Olympic champions Fiji in January.

Baber coached Hong Kong before taking the reins in Fiji Photo: Andy Jones / Hong Kong Rugby Union / AFP

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