RUGBY World Cup Sevens stars Marika Vunibaka and Nasoni Roko will feature for the ULR Samurai International to the GFI Hong Kong Football Club 10s tournament later this month.
The duo will reunite for the first time since their 2005 RWC 7s victory in Hong Kong. The team will be captained by lanky Tokatoka Westfield Babas forward Pio Tuwai. Former national reps Saula Rabaka, Kelemedi Bola, Iliesa Keresoni and David Batiratu are also in the team.
Livewire Nadroga rugby hooker Jerry Naureure and Koresi Ledua have replaced Vesi Rarawa and Manasa Saulo in the team.
Samurai International coach Sailosi Naiteqe Sr said they wanted to break their losing jinx in Hong Kong.
"This is the first time we are fielding an all-Fijian team for Samurai and we are glad to be given an opportunity to prove our worth," he said.
"We have not won this tournament since our first participation seven years ago. It's the first time for me to coach the team so I am looking forward to breaking our losing record.
"We have experienced players who have been playing at local 7s tournaments and they have proven that they have the match fitness," Naiteqe said.
Samurai founder Terry Sands has put his faith in Naiteqe, two years after the pair organised an all-Fijian team for the Safari Sevens in Nairobi, where Samurai beat Spain and hosts Kenya on the way to reaching the final.
"Sailosi and I have been friends for many years and he also runs the Samurai Fiji Barracudas," said Sands.
"I've invited many Fijians to play over the years and Nasoni Roko played as long ago as 2003 when he came to the UK to play for Samurai for three months," said the former England Sevens and Saxons manager who will again manage Samurai in Hong Kong.
"The standard's getting higher each year, with player availability also becoming harder, so securing top-level players is more difficult than ever. However, I think we've got a great blend of youth and experience this year with our Fijian players."
Samurai is seeded number three in Pool C which has teams from Scotland, England and Ireland.
Former Western Force flyhalf Willie Ripia and former Waikato Chiefs lock Reece Robinson are some of the top-level experienced players at the tournament.
The event is scheduled for March 20-21.