Practice makes rugby perfect

Alasio Naduva Fiji winning try. Picture: World Rugby

FIJI Airways Fiji 7s coach Gareth Baber has revealed that practicing different match scenarios has been an integral part of their training sessions for the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series. The national side had been involved in many late victories recently with one of the highlights was the final of the Singapore 7s against Australia.

Down 21-22 with only a few seconds remaining, Alasio Naduva broke the hearts of the Aussie fans with a blistering run from deep inside Fiji’s to dot down the winning try.

Baber said they had been in tight spots several times.

“I take it back to Hamilton and we played the teams in the top three and four, and won with a last gasp in every one of those games,” Baber said.

“We have done a lot of work on it in training scenarios like with a minute to play, we have got to score.  Players get conditioned to doing that and have the emotional control to make those decisions in the final couple of minutes.”

“I knew that when the Australians got the knock down and went through. I could not see whether it was a knock on but it was a knock on, and you just see the composure of the players knowing they could score from anywhere is a real belief that they can achieve if they want to.”

The national team will now turn its focus to the London 7s which will be played from June 2-3 followed by the Paris 7s from June 8-10. Baber who has showed a lot of emotion motivating the players during game time said their defence had improved.

“I’m quite emotional when it comes to rugby anyway and anyone who has ever played with me and looked at me coaching knows that I like to shout a lot,” Baber said.

“It is just the nature that I have. Defence is an individual thing. It is basic as it gets when it comes to rugby with you stopping the guy going into the other direction. ”

“We know the likes of South Africa want to dominate physically. We got to make good tackles within the laws of the game.”

“We have worked on it at training and individual development is coming through. Occasionally in 7s you will get broken but we understand it, the boys do not need to panic at that stage. You get yourself back together, get the composure and go and deliver what you should.”

HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series points: Fiji 145, South Africa 141, New Zealand 120, Australia 108, United States 93, Kenya 93, Argentina 92, England 88, Samoa 55, Scotland 51, Canada 51, France 47, Spain 45, Wales 35.

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