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Pravin Narain
Thursday, November 02, 2017

NEW Zealand 7s coach Clark Laidlaw believes the 2017 Oceania 7s will set the platform for them in the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series which will kick off at the end of this month.

"The upcoming season is a big one for us with the Commonwealth Games and World Cup on top of the World Series," he said.

"Kicking things off in Fiji is a good opportunity to see where we are at and put all our pre-season work out on the field.

"We have got some talented athletes who have assembled at our base in Mt Maunganui and the guys are looking forward to getting to Fiji.

"It is a country with a rich sevens history and getting to play there, in front of their passionate fans, will be a great experience.

"On the field we are expecting tough opposition and getting quality competition ahead of the Dubai 7s will be great."

NZ Black Ferns coach Allan Bunting also said it would be a tough competition.

"We are really looking forward to officially kicking off our season in Fiji," he said.

"We had a solid hit-out against Australia a few weeks ago.

"it was good for the team to get back out on to the field as we develop our game plan and prepare for a busy season.

"We have had a number of camps leading into this tournament and having meaningful competition before we head to Dubai to open the world 7s series is invaluable.

"I know the team are excited about getting to Fiji - it's a country that loves Sevens rugby so to be part of the Oceania Sevens will be a special experience."

The Oceania 7s will be from November 10-11 at the ANZ Stadium in Suva.

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