Marist Sevens draw throws up pool of death

By Thomas Airey 07 February 2020, 11:18PM

Vaiala, Vaimoso, Moata'a and Fiji Barbarians have all been drawn into what looks to be the Vailima Marist International Sevens' pool of death: Pool Four of the men's division.

The Fijian side are one of four international sides taking part next weekend at ACP Marist Stadium in Lotopa, along with Talavalu from American Samoa and Linwood from Christchurch, New Zealand in the men's division, and defending women's champions Canterbury Samoa.

2019 men's champions Tabadamu will not be defending their title, however don't be surprised if Fiji Barbarians become the fifth champions from overseas in a row.

Representing the AYI Club, all but two of the Isake Kotonibau-coached squad have played for Fiji's national team, including Manu Lagai, Jone Vota, Joseva Talacolo and Glen Cakautini, who were all part of Tabadamu's 2019 triumph.

The star-studded lineup also includes Olympic gold medallists Samisoni Viriviri and Kitione Taliga, as well as Pio Tuwai and Emosi Mulevoro who both have over 100 World Rugby Sevens Series caps.

The Fiji Barbarians could hardly have been drawn into a tougher pool though, against three Apia powerhouses in Vaiala, Moata'a and Vaimoso.

However all three of the local teams are glad to have been drawn with AYI, and welcome the challenge.

Top seeds BBE Vaiala won the Plate in 2019 for coming fifth overall, and will be well-marshalled as always by skipper Patrick Fa'apale.

TIR Moata'a come into the tournament as the in-form local side, having won the Apia Rugby Union Sevens last weekend with a win over Ott Tama Uli Salelologa in the final.

Tama Uli were beaten by Tabadamu in last year's Marist Final, and will expect to advance from Pool 1 where they are the top seed over Lauli'i Lions, Talavalu and Moamoa.

The team from Savai'i have been a dominant force in local sevens over the past couple of years, but may end up paying for that success if their Manu Samoa 7s squad members are held out of the tournament.

Tama Uli are one of two men's sides from Savai'i participating, along with Lupesiliva.

There are two women's teams from Savai'i taking part as well; Taga and Teine o le Aava.

They have both been drawn in Pool 1, along with top seeds Canterbury and Aleipata.

Apia Maroons are top seeds in Pool 2 having been beaten by Canterbury in last year's final.

In the women's division, the top two teams in both pools will progress to the semifinals, while the top two from all four of the men's pools will progress to the quarterfinals.

Men's Division

Pool 1

Pool 2

Pool 3

Pool 4

Tama Uli Salelologa







Fiji Barbarians


Marist Saints







Women's Division

Pool 1

Pool 2

Canterbury Samoa






Teine o le Aava


By Thomas Airey 07 February 2020, 11:18PM

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