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Zanzeer Singh
Wednesday, January 17, 2018

SOUTH African referee Fhatuwani Rasivhenge, also known as Rasta, expects the Fiji Airways Fiji 7s team to hit their peak form during the Commonwealth Games in April and the Rugby World Cup 7s in July.

Rasta, who will be officiating at the Mana Whey Fiji Coral Coast 7s as a guest referee, said Fiji had a young squad.

"They are still building up the youngsters," he said.

"So every opportunity they will get, they will gain experience. I think they will be very good because they have got a few tricks up their sleeves.

"Fiji will be really good come the Commonwealth Games and the Rugby World Cup 7s so it's pretty exciting. We saw glimpses of their excitement in Cape Town so I think they will be very good."

Rasta, who has been officiating in the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series since 2011, has been given a ticket to officiate in the next Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast in Australia.

He is also vying for a spot on the officiating panel for the Rugby World Cup 7s in San Francisco, United States.

Rasta said he was glad to be back in Fiji for the Coral Coast 7s.

"I'm looking forward to the tournament," he said.

"I was gutted that I missed out last year. I will do a couple of games. I need to stretch the legs before heading to Australia and then New Zealand later. I'm pretty excited for that.

"It is a massive year for everybody in 7s. You literally need to have two teams to play in the World Rugby 7s series and have the best team for the Commonwealth Games and the Rugby World Cup 7s. So far I have been selected for the Commonwealth Games. I'm on the waiting list for the Rugby World Cup 7. It is performance based on the next couple of tournaments and hopefully I should make it."

Rasta, who celebrated his 32nd birthday earlier this month, said it was great to have young match officials moving up to the highest level.

"We need to add depth towards Tokyo 2020 Olympics because some of us are getting old," he said laughingly. The Commonwealth Games could be better by including all the teams. It is very selective based on the Commonwealth nations. But at the end of the day a lot of the teams that go to the Commonwealth Games are really competitive.

"It is a real tough tournament. I went to the last one in Glasgow and every team was up for it."








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