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Three Fiji players England will need to watch

Published 15/09/2015

Niko Matawalu will present a threat to England
Niko Matawalu will present a threat to England

England will face some of rugby's most dangerous players when they meet Fiji in Friday's World Cup opener.

Here, Press Association Sport looks at three Islanders capable of stunning the hosts at Twickenham.


Position: Wing/centre

Club: Crusaders

Age: 27

Caps: 20

Tries: 15

One of many players hailed as the 'new Jonah Lomu', Nadolo is in the rare position of actually being bigger than the All Black great. At 6'5" and 20 stones, he is a monster threequarter who has been at his most dangerous on the wing. A nomadic and troubled career was in danger of finishing unfulfilled until he found a home at the Crusaders two years ago and he is now among the most feared players in the Super 15.


Position: Scrum-half

Club: Bath

Age: 26

Caps: 26

Tries: 8

While the giant Nadolo steamrollers would-be tacklers, Matawalu deceives them with his electric footwork and turn of pace. The Bath-bound scrum-half, who left Glasgow at the end of last season, acts as the heartbeat of his side, using vision and guile to create openings. He plundered two tries in Fiji's final warm-up match against Canada, displaying his threat with the ball in hand and intelligence as a support runner.


Position: Centre/wing

Club: Leicester

Age: 31

Caps: 35

Tries: 14

Already well know on these shores, Goneva was crowned players' player of the year for his exploits at Leicester during the 2013-14 season. His arsenal is packed full of all the usual Fijian weapons - pace, deadly running angles, tackle-busting power, the ability to offload and a defence-splitting sidestep. Scored 12 tries in 18 Premiership matches in the 2013-14 campaign and although last season was less spectacular, he is a player England must watch carefully.

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