World Cup qualification a boost for Fiji women's rugby

Fiji Rugby is keen to capitalise after the women's national team qualified for their first ever World Cup in 2021.

The Fijiana XV overwhelmed Samoa 41-13 in the Oceania qualifying final at the weekend to book their ticket to New Zealand.

Head coach Alifereti Doviverata said qualifying for the World Cup is a "historical moment" that will enhance development for women's rugby in Fiji.

"It means a lot firstly, for the development of women's rugby," said the former Flying Fijians captain.

"I think it has come a long way since its inception in Fiji and the rugby development officers, the CEO and staff have been working tirelessly to get some recognition in women's rugby in Fiji."

"I am thankful we have achieved what we set out from the beginning at that was to qualify and I think the interest and support from all the stakeholders will come through so that we will be able to prepare well for the World Cup."

Fiji withdrew from qualifying for the 2010 Women's Rugby World Cup because of the size of the entry fee and were outclassed by Hong Kong and Japan at a final repechage tournament for the 2017 tournament.

Alifereti Doviverata said their victory over Samoa, who attended the 2002, 2006 and 2014 World Cups, shows the progress women's rugby has made in Fiji.

He plans to sit down with Fiji Rugby CEO John O'Connor in the coming days and is hopeful the Fijiana can arrange more games to help with their preparations.

"We are hoping that we will get a few more test matches for 2020, that'll be good for us moving forward and we can get a few tours, international exposure," he said.

"I think that will benefit the girls and we hope to work with a wider base of coming through age groups and we'll work towards an event and try to get some new talent into the team."