Police face challenge to retain Fiji's Coral Coast Sevens

Police won the title in 2015, but can they do so again this year?
Police won the title in 2015, but can they do so again this year?
©Bayley's Fiji Coral Coast Sevens

If defending champions Police are going to prevail at this year's Bayley's Fiji Coral Coast Sevens - held next week - then they are going to have their work cut out.

They have been drawn in a pool alongside local rivals Westfield Dragons and Shangri-La Daveta as well as guest team Germany.

The tournament gets underway on Thursday 14th January in Sigatoka with reigning women's champions Aussie Pearls in a pool with Jingsu (China) and Striders (Fiji).

Founded in 2010, the Coral Coast Sevens 'champion of champions' strategy brings together the best club sides in Fiji and guest sides from overseas and ahead of the Olympics, they have made a major equality statement by awarding equal prize money to both men and women's teams.

The winners of both men's and women's competitions will be given $20,000 after three days of intense competition at Lawaqa Park.

The quality of the field is underlined by the fact that previous winners Wardens and Yamacia had to qualify, doing so in one of four qualifying touraments through which Westfield Dragons and Uluinakau also made it.

Australia's shadow national team, the Aussie Thunderbolts, qualified through the sister tournament, the UON Central Coast Sevens in October and are among the early favourites.

They are joined in Pool B by Uluinakau and sponsor teams Outrigger Fiji Beach Resort and Uprising Beach Resort.

Full pools are below and the tournament schedule can be downloaded from the link above.

Pool A

Police, Westfield Dragons, Shangri-La Daveta, Germany

Pool B

Aussie Thunderbolts, Uluinikau, Outrigger Fiji Beach Resort, Uprising Beach Resort

Pool C

Tabadamu, Ratu Filise, Yamacia, Hideaway Hurricanes

Pool D

Wardens, BLK First Landing, Naviti Resort, Tonga