THE Fiji 7s team will not feature in the 26th Fiji Bitter Nawaka 7s next week. This is after the Fiji Rugby Union failed to meet the deadline for the registrations yesterday.
A disappointed Nawaka Rugby Club president Mataiasi Nabau said they had officially invited the Fiji team.
He said the FRU and national 7s team management failed to respond.
"We have hosted the national 7s team in the previous tournaments," Nabau said.
"At one time many 7s tournament organisers in the country were not allowing the national 7s team to participate in their events but we did."
"This was just to give the national coach a chance to test the combinations before the overseas tournaments."
The top teams that will be participating in the two-day Nawaka 7s tournament include Wardens Green, Wardens Gold, Police, Army Red, Army Green, Western Force, Samurai Barracudas, Westfield Tokatoka Resort Barbarians, Red Rock, Nasinu, Yamacia and Ratu Filise.
Nasinu won the tournament in 2009, Ratu Filise won the title in 2010, Samurai Barracudas won it in 2011 while Westfield Barbarians won the tournament last year.
Nabau said the Nawaka 7s tournament remained unique despite other bigger tournaments attracting overseas teams.
"We have a special message that we are promoting grassroots level rugby in the country," Nabau said.
"There are some high profile tournaments that are attracting overseas teams and only the cream of the local clubs. That will not help in development here."
"We always entertain teams from the interior of Viti Levu and Vanua Levu and the other outer islands. It is about giving the players exposure."
"We would like to thank Paradise Beverages for their sponsorship once again."
The annual Nawaka 7s will be played at Prince Charles Park from March 1-2.