Fijian Rugby World Cup team train - and make friends - at Swansea University

The Fiji rugby team has been training at Swansea University’s sports facilities – and taking time out to meet local families and young people – ahead of Thursday’s game against Wales in the Rugby World Cup.

Swansea University is a team base for the Rugby World Cup 2015 and has already hosted the Canadian team.   The teams have been using the University’s top-class sports facilities, which have previously been used for major events such as the IPC Paralympic Games in 2014.   

400 x 600Known as the Flying Fijians, the Fiji team welcomed young volunteers from Disability Sport Wales and some local families to one of their training sessions. 

The visitors were able to watch the team be put through their paces by their coaching team, and after the session they had a chance to meet some of the players and get autographs and pictures.  

Picture:  Fiji winger Nemani Nadolo, 6 ft 4in, 20 stone, and scorer of 16 of 24 of Fiji's points so far in the tournament.

More pictures of the Fijians at Swansea University

Head Coach of Fiji John McKee said:  

“The facilities here at Swansea University have been excellent.  The staff have been really helpful, making sure everything is right for us”.

Fijian winger and kicker Nemani Nadolo, who has scored 16 of Fiji’s 24 points in the tournament so far, though he is ruled out of the Wales game, said in interview at the session:

“Wales put in a gutsy effort on Saturday at Twickenham.   They’ve had a lot of injuries but whoever plays against us will be up to the job. Playing Wales at home is never easy.   But it’s a good challenge for us and we’re really looking forward to it.  

We were disappointed to lose against Australia but we’ve bounced back.   However far we go, we want to finish on a high and that starts this week against Wales.”

Darren Wyn Jones of Disability Sport Wales said:

“The volunteers were absolutely thrilled to meet the Flying Fijians. It was such a wonderful opportunity and the Fijian team were so welcoming and accommodating of all the volunteers.

On behalf of Disability Sport Wales we would like to sincerely thank Swansea University for arranging this opportunity for our volunteers.  It’s a great example of Swansea University and Disability Sport Wales continuing to build a legacy from the Swansea 2014 IPC Championships”. 

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 Picture:  Young player and fan Bruno (2nd from right) meets Fijian stars (l-r) Vereniki Goneva, Campese Ma'afu, and Netani Talei

Read about the Canadian team training at Swansea University

More about sport at Swansea University