Flying Fijians wary of Tonga in upcoming final RWC build-up

The Flying Fijians will be expecting Tonga to bring a completely new level of physicality in their upcoming match next Saturday in New Zealand.

 Speaking to ‘The Fiji Times’, Head Coach John McKee said they are under no illusion that this game would be no walk in the park.

“Tonga will bring a lot of physicality,” McKee said.

“If you think it was physical against Samoa, you can rank that up with Tonga.”

McKee expects the stands to be flooded with the Tongan red flags and Tongans turning up in numbers wearing red in support for the Ikale Tahi.

Fiji will be walking into a red zone- more Tongan support is expected in Auckland than Fijians.

Tongans packed Eden Park in the opening match of the 2011 RWC against New Zealand and jammed Queen Street after the match as the fans spilled on to the streets in celebration of their team.

Last year in Hamilton, during the Rugby League World Cup, Tongans packed the grandstands to support their team which upset New Zealand.

“Playing at Eden Park, I expect red flags to be all over the park.”

McKee highlighted the Tonga match will be a big factor as the clock ticks towards Japan.

“What is really important for us is that it is our last game ahead of the Rugby World Cup.”

“So it is really important we get our combinations going and work on the things we need to work on ahead of meeting Australia.”

“Yes we will have to deal and match with the physicality of the Tongan team, but it’s important that we impose our game and be patient with our attack and award some tries.”

The last time the two sides met was when the Flying Fijians lost to Tonga 19-27 during their 2018 Pacific Nations Cup challenge.