Caption: Chef de Mission – Carl Probert with Acting CEO FRU – Dr Kafoa.
FASANOC is pleased to announce the inclusion of a Fiji Rugby 7s Team in Team Fiji to the 2014 Nanjing Youth Olympic Games, which will be held in China from 16th – 28th August,2014.
This follows the withdrawal of the New Zealand team which had qualified for Nanjing after its senior All Blacks 7s Team won the IRB World Cup in Moscow earlier this year.
New Zealand however declined the invitation from the IRB for its men’s team but we believe that its women’s team will be participating in Nanjing as their senior women’s team also won the IRB Women’s World Cup.
New Zealand’s decision not to take up its qualification place resulted in the slot passing to Fiji as the Men’s runner up within the Oceania region.
Fiji’s acceptance of the qualification place was done in consultation with the Fiji Rugby Union which is now looking at the logistics of selecting a training squad and nominations for team officials.
The Nanjing Youth Olympic Games restricts participation to young rugby players born between 1 January 1996 – 31 December 1997 ie under 18 years of age.
Young athletes from other sports aspiring to qualify for the Nanjing Olympic Youth Games have until 8July 2014 to meet minimum qualifying standards. National Federations with potential to qualify athletes include Athletics, Hockey, Swimming, Table Tennis, Triathlon and Weightlifting. In the meantime, FASANOC has received Universality Places in the sports of Athletics (1 male + 1 female), Swimming (1 male) and Weightlifting (1 female in the -48 kg category).
FASANOC views the Nanjing Olympic Youth Games as an important pathway for aspiring Olympians and is delighted that with the inclusion of Rugby 7s in the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, young rugby players from Fiji will have the opportunity to experience the atmosphere of an Olympic Games with a view of encouraging and motivating them to continuing their rugby careers leading up to the Olympic Games of Rio 2016, Tokyo 2020 and beyond.
CARL PROBERT, CHEF DE MISSION
TEAM FIJI 2014