Fiji in ominous sevens form
February 4, 2000
In the first two rounds of pool play in the Wellington round of the World Sevens Series Fiji were in ominous form.
In their first match, against Papua New Guinea, they ran in 8 tries to win 54-0. Their ability to retain possession and then strike when gaps opened up was the main feature of their play. Waisale Serevi was in sparkling form, orchestrating and probing in characteristic fashion.In their second game , against the USA, they made a slower start , holding a slender 14-10 lead. They cut loose in the second period to run out comfortable 47-10 winners.
New Zealand, the other Series joint leaders , made a very slow start against the unknown Cook Islanders. The experiment of playing Jonah Lomu in the forwards was unsuccessful and the home side's nervousness was eagerly exploited by the Islanders. New Zealand held a slender half time lead of 7-5 and a sensational upset was on the cards , but second half tries by Cullen and Te Nana settled Kiwi nerves.Their second game against Tonga was a different story. Lomu was restored to the wing and the play of the side was more purposeful, the aggression of their defence denying the Tongans any rhythm. In a one -sided procession New Zealand scored 9 tries to win 57-0.
"We know where we are going and we know where we want to get but how long that will take is anybody's guess." David Humphreys on his plans for Gloucester
Jim Mallinder and Justin Burnell were sat on the same top table, but in different circumstances. Tom Hamilton reports on the Aviva Premiership season launch
Tom Hamilton reports back from the launch of the Guinness PRO12 where there is a renewed sense of optimism with all of the off-field changes to the league
So much for the great Australian revival, writes Greg Growden. It now has the potential of going off the rails after the capitulation at Eden Park