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Raiwalui rings changes for the final RWC pool match

Four players will feature in their first Rugby World Cup game as Flying Fijians head coach Simon Raiwalui named the 23-member squad for the final pool match against Portugal on Monday.

Meli Derenalagi is on the flanks, Sireli Maqala comes at fullback while Peni Matawalu and Iosefo Masi have been named on the bench.

Raiwalui has maintained his front-row of props Eroni Mawi and Luke Tagi while Sam Matavesi is at hooker. Temo Mayanavanua gets his first start and pairs up with Isoa Nasilasila at locks, while Derenalagi partners with Levani Botia on the flanks. Viliame Mata remains at number 8.

Frank Lomani gets the start at half-back and will share the role with Vilimoni Botitu at number 10. Vinaya Habosi makes it into the starting line-up and features on the left wing while Selesitino Ravutaumada remains on the right. Josua Tuisova and Waisea Nayacalevu are in the midfield while Sireli Maqala is at fullback.

Mesake Doge comes back to the bench and joins Tevita Ikanivere and Peni Ravai. Peni Matawalu and Iosefo Masi are expected to add firepower in the second spell.

Raiwalui said “We’ve had some outstanding training, the guys have put their hands up. There have been some bangs and bruises from the last match and a couple of others who have really earned their spots.”

We had a few things to work on after the Georgia game, they tested us in certain areas, especially in the first half. The boys, to their credit, answered those questions. We went back to basics this week.”

He further added that Portugal will come prepared for the game and will not leave any stones unturned.

“I’ve watched them since we knew we would be playing them and they play a great brand of rugby, with a good spirit under.

We know it will be a really tough match. We really want to perform to the best of our ability and if we do that, the result will take care of itself” he said.
Flying Fijians V Portugal

  1. Eroni Mawi
  2. Sam Matavesi
  3. Luke Tagi
  4. Isoa Nasilasila
  5. Temo Mayanavanua
  6. Meli Derenalagi
  7. Levani Botia
  8. Viliame Mata
  9. Frank Lomani
  10. Vilimoni Botitu
  11. Vinaya Habosi
  12. Josua Tuisova
  13. Waisea Nayacalevu
  14. Selesitino Ravutaumada
  15. Sireli Maqala


  1. Tevita Ikanivere
  2. Peni Ravai
  3. Mesake Doge
  4. Te Ahiwaru Cirikidaveta
  5. Albert Tuisue
  6. Teti Tela
  7. Peni Matawalu
  8. Iosefo Masi
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