Sevens: Fiji's Waisale Serevi says success in Hong Kong means everything
Waisale Serevi insists winning the Cathay Pacific/HSBC Hong Kong Sevens would mean everything to Fiji.
Last Updated: 27/03/14 11:32pm
Fiji, two-time World Cup Sevens winners in 1997 and 2005, come into this weekend's event full of confidence having taken the Toyko Sevens with a last-gasp win over South Africa.
However, Serevi says it is success in Hong Kong which really matters to Fijian rugby fans - a tournament that can be seen live on Sky Sports this weekend.
Indeed, the 45-year-old has revealed that there will be widespread dejection back in his homeland if their current crop of stars fail to lift the trophy in Hong Kong.
"I think the team (Fiji) last week didn't start off properly. They didn't start well, but did well against Samoa. They gained in confidence and finished the tournament on a high note," he told Sky Sports.
"South Africa played well, New Zealand played well. In Hong Kong all these teams are always tough. They always look forward to the Hong Kong Sevens.
"Fiji I think at the moment they did well in the last tournament. I believe they've have a good chance of winning back-to-back tournaments. That is the goal for them, especially in Hong Kong.
"If Fiji loses other tournaments the whole of Fiji doesn't care. This is the one all of the Fijians all over the world stop. They listen to the radio or watch TV or try to find out how the boys are doing.
"When Fiji wins the Hong Kong Sevens it's a good year for Fiji. When we lose people are disappointed for 12 months and wait for the next Hong Kong Sevens."
Serevi played rugby for over two decades and he says World Cup Sevens success in 1997 and 2005, both in Hong Kong, rank as his most cherished moments on the field.
"I've got a lot of good memories in rugby, looking back at how I started out thank God, for being the power and strength to up my level," he continued.
"I've got a lot of memories, such as winning the Rugby World Cup Sevens in 1997. Also winning the World Cup Sevens in 2005 when weren't given a chance of success."
The Fijian legend enjoyed a spell with Leicester Tigers during the late 90s and he relished his time playing under skipper Martin Johnson, who later helped England to World Cup glory in 2003.
"I really had a good time with Leicester, playing with them. I had one season with them, playing in the Heineken Cup, alongside famous rugby players," Serevi continued.
"After that I had a contract in France and I had to move on with my life with my family. I was happy to play under Martin Johnson. I learned a lot of things.
"Especially the Leicester Tigers they were a first-class club and I really enjoyed my time with them."
Sevens Legends Waisele Serevi and Ben Gollings are leading the HSBC Rugby Festivals powered by Serevi which are taking rugby to children around the world. For more info follow @HSBCrugby