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Five injured

Maciu Malo
Monday, February 10, 2014

THE Vodafone national 7s team paid a heavy price from its recent Wellington 7s loss with five key players injured.

Skipper Osea Kolinisau, debutant Viliame Mata, flyer Jona Tuitoga, Leo Naikasau and Donasio Ratubuli will undergo special rehabilitation program to help them recover in time before the Japan and Hong Kong 7s tournaments next month.

The five will join lanky Pio Tuwai who is still recovering from the injury he suffered against New Zealand in Las Vegas a fortnight ago.

Team manager Paula Biu said injuries suffered by Kolinisau, Naikasau and Mata were major compared with Tuitoga and Ratubuli.

He said the medical team would monitor the progress of the five players with high hopes all players would be available for the next HSBC IRB 7s leg.

"Based on the five injured players the major injuries are suffered by Osea(Kolinisau), Viliame (Mata) and Leo (Naikasau)," said Biu.

"The medical team will monitor the progress of these players and hopefully these five boys will be ready again before they march back into camp later this month.

"Our medical department will work on their rehab and to make sure the players to be fully fit two weeks before Hong Kong and Japan."

Kolinisau said injuries were part and parcel of rugby but he was optimistic of recovering in time for the next IRB 7s tournaments.

He said it was hard to watch his troops from the sideline after being injured in their first pool game against New Zealand.

"I really wanted to play, I told the boys — I wished if we could change legs so I can play," said Kolinisau.

"That is rugby, it is a contact sport and you cannot control injuries.

"You cannot control it, you just have to get along with it.

"But I am recovering fast I had an X-ray and it's just a sprained muscle which needed rehab."

The side arrived in the country yesterday without coach Ben Ryan. Fiji is still in third spot on the points table with 73 points. New Zealand is on top with 99 points.

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