THERE'S no doubting the passion the Newborn Waibasaga team has for sevens rugby.
The club from the interior of Naitasiri had to cross Wainimala River eight times to get to the nearest point of transport access — that's about five kilometres on foot and then a further three hours ride to the Capital City.
Newborn Waibasaga made its debut in the 38th Fiji Bitter Marist 7s at the ANZ Stadium and emerged as one of the upcoming clubs.
The team featured in the second cup eliminations (top 16) where they lost to giants Yamacia 12-28.
The team is content with the achievement and hopes it will become a force to reckon with in the near future.
Newborn Waibasaga manager Reverend Kitione Tabuivalu said it was a good learning experience for the side which is made up of the players from the village.
He explained the "Newborn" referred to the team's commitment to Christ.
Newborn Waibasaga earlier played in the Mokani and Uluinakau 7s where they finished in respectable positions.
"Most of our players are farmers back in the village except for a couple who are FNU students but originally from the village," Tabuivalu said.
"I'm happy with the achievement in the Marist 7s. Finishing in top 16 is quite good for a team which is playing in this tournament for the first time.
"We should come back stronger next year."
Tabuivalu said given the location of the team, finance was their major problem.
He hoped they were able to attract some sponsors from participating in the tournament.
"Our players are unemployed, so it's hard to fund these trips.
"We hope to get some assistance from the business community to help expose the talent we have back in the village."