THE New Dawn rugby 7s team in Lautoka is the dark horse of the Gaunavou 7s scheduled to be staged at Ba's market ground tomorrow.
Team manager Taniela Kepa said the side features unknown players who had the talent to surprise big teams in the competition.
He said the team was a mixture of Lautoka and Ra players including an Indo-Fijian high school student.
Kepa. who had a hand in grooming former stars such as William Ryder and Orisi Sareki while io Vanua Levu, said his team would not be there to make up the numbers but to give the opposition a good run for their money.
"We may be new to this tournament but we have the players who have the talent to surprise well-known teams," said Kepa.
"The tournament will be an opportune time to expose our players and I am confident of their chances.
"We have players who come all the way from Ra to play 7s in Lautoka because they don't have such tournaments there.
"These players always love the 7s game and this tournament will be used to gauge their standard against other players."
Meanwhile, defending champion Natabua has withdrawn participation.
Tournament official Timoci Driu confirmed Natabua has pulled out along with the Tokatoka Babas but have availed themselves for the Gaunavou 7s in Lautoka next weekend.
He said the withdrawal of these top teams would not take away the competitiveness of the tournament.
"We anticipate great rivalry from teams such as Mala Young Boys, Western Suburbs, Yasawa Central and Sorokoba," Driu said.