After 3 rounds of Skipper Cup competition, a 40-member extended squad was selected from various provincial teams where they’ll be attending camp and weekly strength and conditioning test at the Fiji Rugby High-Performance Unit.
Flying Fijians head coach Vern Cotter said that the local competition has been going well and the targeted players need to be pushing harder because there’s been a bit of jump to international standard.
These top elite players will be going through series of high performance unit programmes as well as camp to benchmark where they’re at in terms of fitness and to work on getting them to international standard by October.
In an interview with Fiji Rugby strength and conditioning coach Naca Cawanibuka, he explained how these players will be monitored on a regular basis to make sure they’re on the right track.
“We’ve got more than 40 players, we’re assembling them at all our HPU gym in Suva and the west and we’re looking at gauging these boys into screening to check on their fitness.”
“We’ll be looking at all areas in terms of functional movements and that’s something we want to focus on, how well these guys move to perform well on the field at the highest level.”
Cawanibuka is pleased with the high caliber shown by local players coming into this year’s Skipper Cup and knows that the right environment and guidance will boost these players into the international arena.
“There are some really good boys coming through and what they need are time and the right environment and that’s what we’ll help them with.”
“We’ll continue to test them with their strength level, we’ve been putting GPS on our targeted players as well and we’ll continue to do that.”
“What’s important for us is that players are doing proper training in terms of rugby and conditioning.”
The main aim is to get these players into the highest intensity of training to match what the boys will encounter at the highest level of rugby.
“We’ll be bringing them in to see where they’re at in terms of fitness level and we’ll continue to prepare them for international level competition.”
These local players are just starting their identification pathway and camp based elite training environment as they aim to reach international standard.