Fiji didn’t make the final in Round 6 of HSBC Sevens World Series in Vancouver, but their players certainly made an impact on the pitch – and none more so than Kitione Taliga. A relative newcomer to the reigning World Champion’s powerful squad, Taliga put up some impressive numbers which earned him the DHL Impact Player Award of the HSBC Vancouver Sevens.
“This is a blessing for me it’s an honor to be part of the Fiji 7s team.”Kitione Taliga
The 22-year-old prison officer made 13 tackles, 9 clean breaks, 5 offloads and 26 carries to top the DHL Performance Tracker in Vancouver.
Teammate Jasa Veremalua, who is fourth overall in the series, put up the sixth best stats in Canada.
Taliga donned his nation’s jersey for the first time less than a year ago at the Scotland Sevens. At the time he told Fiji TV: “This is a blessing for me it’s an honor to be part of the Fiji 7s team.”
Since his debut, Taliga, who is also the cousin of the flying Samisoni Viriviri, has made a mark on Fiji sevens rugby, scoring 11 tries and 89 points in 23 matches. He scored two tries in Fiji’s dramatic come-from-behind win against Australia just last week in Las Vegas.
DHL Performance Tracker
Fiji’s Savenaca Rawaca continues to lead the series overall with 117 carries, though he’s tied with South Africa’s Seabelo Senatla at 213 points. With Jasa Veremalua in fourth and Osea Kolinisau in fifth, the World Champions are the only team with multiple players on the DHL Performance Tracker leaderboard.
HSBC Hong Kong Sevens
From North America the series now crosses the Pacific for Round 7 of the HSBC Sevens World Series, kicking off in Hong Kong on April 10. The pools have been drawn and the excitement is already building. “With the top 15 teams here, and the Rio Olympics just around the corner, the Hong Kong Sevens is going to be even more exciting than usual," said Hong Kong coach and former Wales sevens international Gareth Baber. Be sure to follow the conversation on the Twittersphere with the hashtag #DHLImpactPlayer.