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Ben eyes Vegas title

Emoni Narawa
Monday, January 20, 2014

BEN Ryan and the Fiji 7s team have never tasted victory at the US-leg of the tournament in Las Vegas.

Ryan said he had never won a tournament in Las Vegas and San Diego. Fiji won its only US title at Petco Park, San Diego, in 2007 but has yet to taste victory at the Sam Boyd Stadium ever since the inaugural Las Vegas event in 2010.

"My record is not brilliant.

"I could have won a couple of years ago in San Diego when we beat Fiji in the quarter-finals, we beat South Africa but we lost to Argentina in the final," he said.

Ryan recalled the loss to Argentina as a terrible one. However, he said during his term as England coach, England twice reached the semi-finals and final.

He said the travel factor was a drawback from the European teams such as Wales, Scotland and England.

"I have been to a lot of semi-finals for England.

"The biggest reason why we have not won any Vegas tournament is that it is the second tournament after Wellington. We got a very good record in Wellington but we cannot back it up in Vegas."

Ryan guided Fiji to win its first ever HSBC Sevens World Series in Dubai tournament last year and will be looking to repeat a similar outing next week.

"I don't think Fiji has won a Vegas tournament, maybe hit the final but, yeah, it's a tough tournament," he said.

"It's a narrow pitch, it just means the games are more competitive and more upsets in Vegas because of the size of the field but we'll make sure we do everything we can to make sure we get as far as we can in the competition."

The Osea Kolinisau-captained side flies out to Las Vegas tomorrow night.

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