Hopes for gold fade
17 April, 2018, 12:00 am
After a thrilling victory against the mighty Blitzbokke, Fiji’s hopes for the elusive gold medal faded at Robina Stadium at the Gold Coast, Australia as a young and fired up All Blacks outscored Fiji two tries to nil!
Fiji was a shadow of the side that trounced the star-studded South Africans and our decision-making and response to the game concluded that fatigue had taken its toll over the players.
From HK to Gold Coast and then two tough games against Wales and Africa had an impact on our boys and Kunatani’s departure from the final added salt to our wounds.
Despite the loss Fiji must be commended for reaching the final and giving everything that they had in their tank but when the mind gets tired things don’t fall into perspective.
The All Blacks shut out our attacking flair with hard tackles and a tight game which frustrated Fiji.
This resulted in our discipline woes and the yellow card to Mocenacagi who otherwise had a brilliant game against South Africa.
NZ played smart rugby and avoided confrontation with the Fijians because they saw what happened to the South Africans when they took the Fijians head on.
Quick tries to Nanai-Seturo and Regan Ware unsettled the Fijians and we could not come back into the game.
The joy on the faces of the champion All Blacks side summed up the feelings that they had. When interviewed NZ skipper Mikkelson said that the feeling was great and they had worked hard to win.
NZ maintained their dominance in the Commonwealth Games winning in 1998, 2002, 2006, 2010 and 2018. South Africa is the only team that ended their winning culture. Indeed a remarkable achievement from the side that has won everything except Olympics gold medal.
As our boys return, let’s welcome them in style as we have the WRSS and RWC 7s titles at stake and Fiji has the depth and talent to win both.