10 Oct 2012

Sport: Dere backs Waqa to succeed

11:33 am on 10 October 2012

Fiji sevens coach Alifereti Dere says his former assistant will make Tonga an even tougher opponent in this year's IRB World Series.

Etuate Waqa assisted Dere last season and led the team to victory in the Gold Coast tournament, but is now the head coach of Tonga's men's and women's teams.

Alifereti Dere says the World Series is getting tougher every year, with more teams capable of winning, and says the next tier such as Tonga are also rising fast.

"Before we can just have a look at the top four teams and now we are looking at eight teams that can win the series. Tonga are always a tough team. Tonga beat us in Wellington in the last series and they are always tough. With Waqa coming in there maybe he will raise Tonga to another level."