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Fiji Time: 1:55 PM on Tuesday 2 September

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Rugby mission

Maciu Malo
Tuesday, June 24, 2014

THE Cook Islands rugby side arrived into the country with a mission to accomplish.

Ranked 49th in world rugby, the side is just a step away from relishing its lifetime dream of playing in its first ever Rugby World Cup.

The visitors are aware that playing against the 10th ranked Flying Fijians will be an uphill battle but they have a few tricks up their sleeves to defy the odds.

Skipper Stanley Wright said the game against the Fijians would be tough and he had faith in his troops to create history for their country.

"Playing in a rugby world cup is every little boy's dream and this is our chance to make our dream come true," said Stanley.

"It's now or never for the boys and we might not have this chance again so we will give it our best shot.

"We have never been in this situation before and it's one game away from playing in the world cup.

"We have a lot on our shoulders and the boys have realised that.

"We are here not to make up the numbers and we will give our best shot and hopefully come out on the better side of the score line."

Wright said the side had watched footage of the Fiji games and they knew what to expect from the hosts.

"The Fijian team are fast, big and they have a very quality team," he said.

"We have a mountain to climb and it's like the David and Goliath story.

"Many Fijian players are professionals and we are not hiding away from the fact that they are a very quality team."

He said they needed to work hard to upset the Fijians in their mission to feature in their first world cup game.

"We have faith in our team and we might just turn the tables on the Fijians," said Wright.

"To beat the Fijians will take a lot of hard work and I am very optimistic we can beat Fiji.

"It's not going to be easy and we are not here to make up the numbers," he said.

Coach Barry George said his troops had prepared well for the game and they would give the Fijians a good run for their money.

"We know Fiji is going to be strong but this is an opportunity for Cook islands to gauge our standing in world rugby.

"Most of our boys are born and bred in New Zealand and have played with some of the great players in New Zealand.

"They know this game can take them to play in the highest level and they are looking forward to a tough encounter.

"This is the biggest opportunity for Cook Islands rugby and the onus is on this team to make the country proud.

The match will be held at Lautoka's Churchill Park on Saturday.


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