|Flying Fijians coach, Inoke Male, names Fiji's PNC squad. |
A total of 16 new players have forced their way into the Flying Fijians squad for the Pacific Nations Cup in Japan next month.
Head coach Inoke Male released the names of the 32 member squad this afternoon with only nine players from last year’s 2011 Rugby World Cup retained; with Scotland based Netani Talei returning to skipper the side.
Of the 16 new players named in the squad four are overseas- based – Jerry Yanuyanutawa (Australia), Apisai Naikatini (Japan), Niko Ratumaitavuki (New Zealand) and Alusio Buto (France).
The new local based players in the squad include:
Maikeli Mocetadra (Suva), Isimeli Koniferedi (Nadroga), Aisake Katonibau (Tailevu), Watisoni Votu (Lautoka), Seremaia Naureure (Nadroga), Iliesa Ratuva (Nadroga), Apakuki Vuaviri (Lautoka), Setareki Koroilagilagi (Lautoka), Benedito Koroi (Lautoka), Iliesa Salusalu (Lautoka), Joeli Lutumailagi (Nadroga), Metuisela Talebua (Lautoka).
Coach Inoke Male has ensured strong representation from the Digicel Fiji 7s side with five players named in the squad including the playmaker pairing of Nikola Matawalu and Metuisela Talebua.
“The players in the Digicel Fiji 7s squad were picked based on their performance during the HSBC Sevens World Series,” Male said.
Another notable inclusion into the squad is 2007 World Cup team member Graham Dewes who, surprisingly perhaps, was overlooked for selection in last year’s Rugby World Cup.
The squad marches into camp this Sunday at the Queen Elizabeth Barracks in Nabua before the 24 member travelling squad to Japan is named.
The full 32 member squad is:
1. Graham Dewes - L/Prop (New Zealand); 2. Jerry Yanuyanutawa - L/Prop - (Brumbies, Australia); 3. Waisea Daveta - T/Prop - (Naitasiri); 4. Setefano Somoca - T/Prop - (Nadroga); 5. Seremaia Naureure - Hooker - (Nadroga); 6. Viliame Veikoso - Hooker - (Suva); 7. Tuapati Taleimaitoga - Hooker - (New Zealand); 8. Leone Nakarawa - Left Lock - (Tailevu); 9. Iliesa Ratuva - Tight Lock - (Nadroga); 10. Sekonaia Kalou - Lock - (Nadroga); 11. Apisai Naikatini - Tight Lock - (Japan); 12. Josesfa Domolailai - Lock/Flanker - (France); 13. Malakai Ravulo - Flanker - (North Harbour, New Zealand); 14. Apakuki Vuaviri - Flanker - (Lautoka); 15. Malakai Volau - Flanker - (Suva); 16. Kelepi Ketedromo - No. 8 - (Nadi); 17. Netani Talei (Captain) - No. 8 - (Edinburgh, Scotland); 18. Nemia Kenatale - Halfback - (Highlanders, New Zealand); 19. Nikola Matawalu - Halfback - (Suva); 20. Kelemedi Bola - Halfback - (Lautoka); 21. Setareki Korolagilagi - Flyhalf - (Lautoka); 22. Niko Ratumaitavuki - Flyhalf - (North Harbour, New Zealand); 23. Benedito Koroi - Inside Centre - (Lautoka); 24. Iliesa Salusalu - Inside Centre - (Lautoka); 25. Joeli Lutumailagi - Outside Centre - (Nadroga); 26. Alusio Buto - Outside Centre - (France); 27. Watisoni Votu - Wing - (Lautoka); 28. Kameli Ratuvou - Wing - (Saracen, England); 29. Mikeli Mocetadra - Wing - (Suva); 30. Isimeli Koniferedi - Fullback - (Nadroga); 31. Aisake Katonibau - 2nd 5/8 - (Tailevu); 32. Metuisela Talebula - Fullback - (Lautoka)