Sunday 5th December
|Digicel Fiji 7s team manager, Sale Sorovaki. |
Most teams are on the flight EN770 from Dubai to Capetown. The first tournament is now history. We all look forward to George. The flight to George was a packed one. We left Dubai at 11:30 AM on Sunday morning.
You can imagine 16 rugby teams all in one plane. I hoped that Emirates had enough food on board.
On board it was a tight squeeze. I had Jerry Burotu, Tani and Nikola in the middle row with me. Nikola slept for most of the flight leaving the rest of us to wiggle and wriggle around in our seats for the duration of the nine hour flight just to get comfortable.
The English and the Samoans travelled by Business Class because they were the two finalists. Apparently this is the case. The two teams in the finals always travel by business class. Nobody told me. Well boys, what more motivation do you need?
This airline had a ton of movies which you can watch at anytime during the flight. There was an Australian Rugby League programme on one of the channels. It talked about Legends of League and one of them happened to be on the same flight. Michael O’Connor was a dual international for Australia and is the current coach of the Australian 7s team.
It was also a chance to have a chat with most coaches on a more personal level. Gordon Tietjens is very down to earth when we talked about other things “not rugby”. He has been doing this for 16 years. I just wonder how he is able to have had such success for such a long period of time? He is a champion coach in my books.
We arrived into Cape Town at 7:00 PM on Sunday night (6:00 AM Monday morning Fiji time).
Cape Town is the home of the Stormers in the Super 14 Rugby Comp. The city is also famous for its harbour as well as its natural setting in the Cape floral kingdom, including such well-known landmarks as Table Mountain and Cape Point. It is hailed as one of the most beautiful cities in the world as officially recognised by Forbes. National Geographic has also listed Cape Town as one of the most iconic cities on the planet and "Places of a Lifetime". Cape Town is also Africa's most popular tourist destination.
We had to hang around Cape Town airport waiting for our connecting flight to George at 10:00 PM. This day is getting longer and longer. The teams looked like they all need to sleep.
We eventually arrived into our hotel in George at twelve midnight. A light dinner was provided before everyone went to sleep. Monday 6th December
We are staying at the Fancourt Hotel and Country Club Estate which is about a ten minute drive from George Town which is located within the Western Province District. This place has a massive 18 hole golf course. In 2004 they hosted the President Cup Tournament which saw the likes of Tiger Woods, Vijay Singh, Jack Nicklaus, Gary Player, Ernie Ells and many golfers grace this place.
It is indeed an honour to be staying here. The boys were told to sleep in and recuperate. We had a gym session in the afternoon. Our liaison officers were the same as last years - David Amsterdam and Elroy Baron.
We had a service in my room – room 531. Sitiveni Waqa led the devotion and spoke on finding the Kingdom of God and its righteousness and all these things will be added unto you. The boys are again reminded of why we are here. Everyone went straight to bed after dinner. Tuesday 7th December
We all woke up very early. To be honest it is quite hard trying to adjust to this time zone. Fiji is 11 hours ahead. We had a hit out against the Kenyans. I videoed the scrimmage so Tani and I can have a look at what needs to be done.
Nasoni Roko did not train as advised by our physiotherapist - Una. It’s nothing serious. So far so good in terms of injuries.
Tonight we will have another training run at the ground before I head off to a function for the teams.
Until next time, moce mada. Digicel Fiji in George View latest photos of the Digicel Fiji team in Dubai. Related articles:
Sale's Sevens Diary - the Burj Khalifa Sale's Sevens Diary - Mind games
Related gallery: Digicel Fiji 7s trials - October 19, 2010