Duo back in the fold

SOLDIER Isake Katonibau and Olympian Semi Kunatani are expected to play a crucial role for the Fiji Airways Fiji 7s team in their campaign to defend their title at the HSBC Hong Kong 7s this weekend.

Their experience and physical presence will surely be a plus for the Gareth Baber-coached side during the three-day tournament.

“Yes, they bring a lot of experience, physicality and maturity about the way they play the game,” Baber said.

“They both like playing the game on the edge, sometimes it can spill over a little bit but the opposition will know what is coming at them when we have those two on the field.”

Baber said Katonibau and Kunatani were also leaders in their own right.

“Isake came last year and people questioned his involvement but I did it for a reason similar to this year because of his leadership and the standard he sets,” Baber said.

“And it is also how much he believes in Fiji and how much he wants to win for Fiji.”

Baber said Kunatani obviously had been playing top level rugby in France and his pedigree as a sevens player was what gave him the nod.

During the scrimmage session with the Spainish team, both Katonibau and Kunatani played a key role in setting play and were also powerful in defence.

Baber is expected to name his 13-member team for the tournament today.

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