RED Rock coach Lote Rasiga says the competition level at this year's Uprising Fiji International Sevens tournament is much higher than previous years.
The Uprising 7s started in 2011 and has become one of the top 7s tournaments in the country.
Red Rock, which was one of the favourites to win the third edition of the tournament, bombed out of the cup competition following surprise losses in pool play at Churchill Park in Lautoka yesterday.
The Qauia-based club lost its opening game to Tokatoka Barbarians 5-22, were whipped by Yamacia 12-24 and lost 12-14 to the Wardens in their last match.
The side will play in the bowl competition today.
Rasiga said the Uprising 7s had proved to be one of the toughest tournaments for the side.
"Definitely it has been a tough tournament and I think it's tougher than the previous ones. It's good for teams, especially the national teams preparing for the Wellington 7s," he said.
"Unfortunately we are out of the cup competition but we will do our best to win something at this tournament."
Red Rock, which missed the services of Jasa Veremalua, Viliame Navanua and Vucago Bainitabua, was the shadow of the side that won the Coral Coast 7s tournament last year.
Rasiga said he fielded some new players to allow them to gain exposure and fill the void left by the trio who have joined the Fiji 7s team.
"It's always been a learning experience for us and we hope to achieve our goals at this tournament as well," he said.
"We are in the rebuilding phase and Uprising 7s is a perfect build-up for us."
Uprising Fiji International 7s Day 1 Photos