FORMER Suva Grammar School sprinter Isoa Me will be the key man for the Red Rock side in the Fiji Bitter Gaunavou sevens tournament, which starts today at the Ganilau Park in Savusavu.
Me will lead the new looking Qauia-based side, which has lost all its experienced players to other clubs in Fiji and abroad.
Coach Lote Rasiga said the three-day tournament would be a good testing ground for his young team.
He said they were eyeing exposure and experience to get ready for the major 7s tournaments later in the year.
Rasiga said they hoped to start their development phase with a successful Gaunavou 7s this weekend.
"There are no experienced players in our squad. We are developing this new bunch of players to fill the space left by the experienced players," he said.
"Some of these players have joined the forces ... the Army, Police, Navy and Prison teams while others are playing in overseas." Rasiga said the team was eager to run on the field and face the tough challenges from top teams at the tournament.
He said while they were not making any bold predictions about the tournament, they were still in contention for the $5000 prizemoney. "Our plan is to expose these new players and get them ready for bigger tournaments later in the year," Rasiga said. "We got some good players in the team who need a bit of exposure and experience to become fine 7s players in the future."
Red Rock has produced some top 7s players like Peni Gaunimeke, who went on to play for the Fiji 7s team in the International Rugby Board Series. Gaunimeke now plays for Police.