THE coaching staff members of Ratu Kadavulevu School had to restructure their game plan to adjust to the loss of five of their key players in preparation for the Coke Zero Deans under-18 final tomorrow.
Forwards Joseva Rauga, Ratu Epeneri Uluiviti, Timoci Meya, rover Ratu Filimoni Nawabalavu and playmaker Filipe Qoro are with the national under-18 7s team for the Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing, China.
The five were instrumental in helping their school reach the final and RKS board chairman Alipate Naiorosui said they now had to resort to Plan B.
RKS is slated to face Lelean Memorial School in the U18 final at 3.45pm at Lautoka's Churchill Park.
Naiorosui said they would now call on their replacements to step up to fill in the big boots of the five players.
"That is one third of our squad gone and so we had to restructure everything and change the whole game plan," he said.
"We have to resort to Plan B because those players were key players to Plan A. Their departure is a big blow to us because the reality is that the game plan rotates around the key players."
"But the Mai Lodoni fighting spirit is still there and we will go out there and give Lelean and the spectators a match to remember and we will try and bring the title back to RKS."
Naiorosui said the players, coaching staff members, teachers, parents and supporters of RKS would not be deterred by the negativity surrounding the issue on national media and social media.
"We are putting everything behind us and focussing on the game because that is most important to us.
"We don't want to be held back by all the negativity. We have moved on and we are now just focused on the final."
But he is hoping the issue with the Fiji Rugby Union (FRU) is not repeated in the future for the betterment of all stakeholders.
"I hope in the future, there are better discussions between the FRU, the Fiji Secondary Schools Rugby Union and the schools if something regarding national duties during the season is concerned."
Meanwhile, the RKS U18 side was given an additional $2000 by their sponsors NewNet just for the final.
NewNet sales and marketing officer Terence O'Neil said they were proud to be associated with RKS.
"We are proud to be assisting RKS achieve their goals on the rugby field," he said.