17 July, 2017, 12:00 am
THE Vodafone Flying Fijians’ target at the 2019 Rugby World Cup is to make the playoffs from their pool.
This was confirmed by Fiji coach John McKee after the 38-16 win over Manu Samoa in their Pacific Nations Cup clash at Apia Park in Samoa on Saturday.
The side has confirmed its spot in Pool D alongside Australia, Wales, Georgia and the America 2 qualifier.
“For us in 2019, our goal is to make the playoffs,” McKee said.
“That’s a massive challenge for us.
“Now we have almost two years to prepare and work together as we have a chance of achieving that.
“We know the road to the 2019 Rugby World Cup is not easy and is a massive, massive challenge.
“I know with this group of players and some other players who are not here on this tour but are just outside this group and some younger players who are starting to make their mark, we will be going to the world cup with a very strong team,” McKee said.
Five local-based players participated in the emphatic victory over Samoa with young Naitasiri halfback Frank Lomani making his debut when he replaced halfback Henry Seniloli in the second half of the match.
The other local-based players who played on Saturday include Joeli Veitayaki, Kalivati Tawake, Nemani Nagusa and Eroni Vasiteri.
The Flying Fijians returned home yesterday.
Their next assignment will be the end of the year tour in November.