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England call

Emoni Narawa
Tuesday, April 01, 2014

FIJI-born Filimoni Savou is on track to don the England rugby jumper.

The former Fiji under-12 rugby skipper has been named in the England under-17 team that will play France on April 5.

Last week, Savou informed his father and former Fiji sevens coach Josateki Savou that he had made the cut.

Savou has been earmarked by English rugby powerhouse Saracens Rugby Club as one of its future stars. The Saracens Academy scouts always keep a tab on young Savou's progress at Shiplake College in Oxfordshire.

Late last year, Savou was drafted into the South West England U18 rugby team after impressing for his Shiplake College team which also earned him a spot in the Oxfordshire U18 squad.

An elated Josateki Savou said he was pleased with the progress of his son who wanted to become an England rep one day.

"I am delighted about the news," he told Times Sport.

"He (Filimoni) called me last week to inform me about the news. It is good news to the family and we're proud of his progress in England."

Josateki said his son had gone through a tough time, trying to impress his school and also the Saracens Academy.

"He has tried hard for a long time to impress the England age-group selectors. For me personally as a dad, seeing the achievement of my son is indeed a proud moment. And doing it away from his family is not easy but me and my family, we salute him for his hard work and perseverance."

Savou acknowledged everyone that played a role in his son's progress while at Shiplake College. He also thanked the Saracens club for keeping a close watch on his performance.

"I want to thank everyone that helped broaden Fili's rugby career while in England. I want to thank the Saracens rugby club for their interest in him and also his Shiplake College coach Sam Backett for grooming Fili."

Vodafone Fiji sevens coach Ben Ryan had shown interest in Savou while coaching the England 7s team in 2012.

He told Times Sport at the 2012 HSBC Sevens World Series tournament at the Gold Coast that his radar was on Savou and fellow Fijian George Wacokecoke, a former England U17 rep.

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