Flying Fijians in Rugby Championship, the time is now

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Listen up New Zealand, before you pull the pin on the 2020 Rugby Championship, why not consider including your brothers from the pacific. I mean we keep hearing Fiji and the Pacific Islands will be considered giving us a little bit of hope and excitement only to be met with the inevitable “it’s not commercially viable” excuse. Well with nothing set in stone and just about everything up in the air, don’t you think this is the perfect time to make this happen?

Give the fans something new

Instead of putting fans through the wash and rinse that is the Rugby Championship, let’s change things up a bit and add a little Pacific flavour. Because at this point, it looks like all anyone is going to get is a Bledisloe Cup series and we’re a little sick of seeing you beat up on the Wallabies. Not to knock the Aussies, but I think it’s fair to say that they are up struggle street at the moment and one has to question how much better can they get? 

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Fiji are on the up. Results from the past 6 seasons serves as evidence. Convincingly defeating the Maori All Blacks, defeating tier one Nations France, Scotland and Italy, pushing Australia and Wales at the World Cup and demolishing what everyone thought was an even matchup in Georgia. 

Fiji faded away against the Welsh and Australia not for a lack of fitness, toughness or coaching, they lost for a lack of big game intensity. Consistent high level matches.

Very little option

Now adding the Flying Fijians to the Rugby Championship may not change the overall result right away but the fact is New Zealand you have very little options and you have just picked a 35 man All Blacks squad with no confirmed matches. Flying the Springboks over from the other side of the world in the middle of a pandemic seems like madness and you can just put a red line through Argentina who have just had 6 players tested positive for COVID19 in the past week. And in case you get any bright ideas about Japan, you can put a line through them as well. They have been inactive since February and their coach can’t get a pass into the country.

Someone heard us

Fiji have been knocking so long and so loud your rivals from across the globe heard them. Yes Fiji will feature in the Six Nations before any word of being included in the Southern Hemispheres pinnacle event. Who would have thought? With very little time and planning the Six Nations got it done and threw Fiji a bone. Not that difficult in the end was it? 

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Will Fiji have its best players available? Probably not, but that wasn’t an issue when a young Flying Fijians side with what was basically the Fijian Drua NRC side and a sprinkling of veterans defeated the star studded Barbarians at Twickenham last year.

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The Fijian local competition is in full swing so what better time to pick their best performers? There is enough talent and class even without the legion of Europe based Fijians, even without the Fijian born players already in the Rugby Championship in a Gold or Black jersey. 

No more excuses

The time for excuses is over,  if ever there was a time to hear our cry it is now. Give the fans something fresh, a little wild and free rugby and breathe life into the corpse that is the Rugby Championship. Vinaka

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