12 Apr 2019

Sport: Fiji 7s striving for consistency in Singapore

11:19 am on 12 April 2019

The Fiji Sevens team needs emotional stability to repeat its Hong Kong victory in Singapore, the coach says.

Fiji sevens captain Kalione Nasoko.

Fiji sevens captain Kalione Nasoko. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

Fiji won a record extending fifth Hong Kong title in a row last weekend but start again in Singapore tomorrow in what's been dubbed the pool of death.

South Africa, Scotland and Canada await the Fijians whose Hong Kong heroics lifted them to second in the World Series standings just seven points behind the USA.

Fiji have won back to back tournaments in Cape Town and Hamilton this season and won four in a row during the second half of the last World Series.

But in 20 years of competing on the global circuit, the three-time champions have never claimed the Cup title on consecutive weekends.

Fiji's coach Gareth Baber following their victory in Hamilton.

Fiji's coach Gareth Baber following their victory in Hamilton. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

Fiji coach Gareth Baber said success in Singapore depended on his players finding balance.

"Inevitably there will be some of that emotion surrounding certain tournaments but creating a consistency and a balance in behaviours and a control of emotional intelligence is a massive part of being able to produce consistent performances," Baber said.

"I would say that there are huge numbers of distractions in and around the lives of these players... What I want to do as a coach is to eradicate those and ensure that these players... are able to have a balance and consistency to look after themselves and the mentality of being top level performers in an elite sport."

The former Fiji sevens star Tomasi Cama snr was helping the players to focus to maintain professional standards, Baber said.

"He's been very good at relating the connection between what we do and our lives in Fiji and who we represent," he said.

"From a spiritual perspective as well, guiding and nurturing the players' understanding of how this fits together for them as international players but most of all as men and as family members.

"They can be seen as very separate things, spirituality and sport but... but they're very compatible things... when it comes to high performance sport."

Fiji and Samoa pray before their pool clash in Vancouver.

Fiji and Samoa pray before their pool clash in Vancouver. Photo: Mike Lee - KLC fotos for World Rugby

The coach also sought to clarify the disciplinary issues Cama has reportedly been brought into the team to address.

"If you want me to say the discipline is bad and the players have been off running round hotels and out late at night - that's never been the case," he said.

"The reality is the discipline we're talking about is much more subtle than that. It's the discipline of mind, it's the discipline of body, it's the discipline of ensuring that you stick by the systems that are in place."

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