7 Feb 2011

Tonga determined to learn from Wellington experience

7:21 am on 7 February 2011

Tonga are determined to build on their experience at the Wellington Sevens this past weekend, despite a disappointing end to events on the field.

Making their first appearance of the season on the IRB World Series circuit, Siua Taumalolo's side were beaten 19-0 by Kenya in the Bowl final, despite having beaten them in pool play the day before.

The team is not competing in Las Vegas this weekend and returns to Tonga ahead of their event, the Hong Kong sevens at the end of March.

Siua Taumalolo says his young team have certainly learnt alot this past weekend.

"It's huge amount of lesson for us today, you know from this two days of tournament in Wellington. Most of the boys - well all of the boys - is from Tonga, they are local boys and about only five of them have played sevens before, have represented their country so most of the team is just first time experience in the Wellington Sevens and like myself too. The pressure was on from the beginning of the tournament but we just learned quick and built from there but I'm very proud of the boys, I think they do well."

New Zealand won their first Wellington title in three years on Saturday, beating England 29-14 in the final.

Samoa knocked Fiji out in the quarter finals before losing to England in the semis.

New Zealand departs Wellington for Las Vegas this afternoon but they'll be without their captain, DJ Forbes, who's been ruled out with a hamstring injury.