21 May 2014

Sport: Cook Islands content with team despite hurdles

11:03 am on 21 May 2014

Despite facing some hurdles around eligibility, Cook Islands coach Barry George is satisfied with the squad he's selected for next month's Rugby World Cup qualifier against Fiji.

15 of the 24-strong squad is New Zealand based, with seven from Australia and one in Japan, while France-based prop Stan Wright will again return to lead the side.

Barry George says there was a mixture of them approaching potential players and some getting in touch of their own accord.

He says while help from some unions wasn't exactly forthcoming, they're now in a much stronger situation than six months ago.

"I think I started last year given an A4 sheet of paper with about 40 names on, now I've got an excel spreadsheet with 200 names on it with contacts and everything available so we have chased pretty hard. [We] hit a few walls around some with eligibility and player agents and probably franchises not being overly supportive of guys putting their hands up. We had a few wars on that and probably missed out on a couple of boys because of it but now it's a matter of getting on with the job and making this team the best it can be".