With Sevens set to return after the Christmas break and Wellington preparing to host the party of the year, we asked Sevens expert Maru Ririnui, of AtTheSevens.com for his thoughts on which players are most likely to influence the outcome of the tournament.
I hope it’s Tomasi Cama, Tim Mikkleson and Kurt Baker but Fiji’s play maker Joji Raqamate has been brilliant so far this season and captain Setephano Cakau returns off the back of a Player of the Tournament performance at the Uprising 7s 2 weeks ago. Cakau is probably the most dangerous attacking forward in the series and could provide the stability and focus that sometimes escapes the Fijians.
France’s Terry Bouhraoua is a brilliant little play maker who can spark attacks from anywhere – the French Tomasi Cama if you like. If France are to fire then he needs to be at the top of his game – and if this happens, France will continue their great run of form.
I’d love to see England’s Mat Turner back at full pace. In my opinion he’s the most complete player in the Series and if he can combine with Dancing Dan Norton out wide, they will rack up the tries at the Cake Tin despite any jeering they might receive from the crowd. If Jeff Williams gets some good minutes, he just might be the X-factor that England need to get back to wining ways.
Australia’s play maker Allan Fa’avallou is highly skilled, tricky and capable. With the confidence that most Australian’s come with, he could light it up and release the powerful wing, Shannon Walker. But if Australia are to make it, then Jesse Parahi needs to get support up front from the likes of Pama Fou.
Photos courtesy of www.AtTheSevens.com
Maru was born and raised in Invercargill, ‘educated’ at Otago University and played rugby in the front row for the Mount Maunganui Sports club in the mid nineties and then Blackheath, just out of London, at the turn of the century.
He focuses on Sevens (AtTheSevens.com; NZ7sMagazine.com) in the hope that he might actually get to make some money going to tournaments around the world one day (soon).