Just In:Fiji Rugby Union Addresses Reports About Fiji Men’s 7s Team Accommodation Conditions…

The Fiji Rugby Union (FRU) issued a statement to clarify reports that the Fiji Airways Fijian Men’s 7s team faced inadequate accommodation during a layover at Sydney Airport while en route to the Dubai 7s tournament.

The issue was investigated following a letter received by FRU, dated December 11, 2023, from the Honourable Speaker of Parliament to the Prime Minister. The letter detailed concerns that the Fiji Airways Fijian Men’s 7s team was forced to sleep outside the Sydney Airport Terminal corridor until it reopened at 2:30 am.

After a comprehensive review and discussions with the Fiji Airways Fijian Men’s 7s management and players, the FRU clarified that the team’s flight arrangements were handled by World Rugby. It was confirmed that accommodation at the Ibis Airport Hotel in Sydney had been arranged to ensure the players had proper rest and comfort during their transit, facilitating their journey to Dubai.

However, the investigation revealed that while the players were accommodated at the Ibis Airport Hotel, the team’s Head Coach and Assistant Coach stayed outside the terminal with the team luggage and equipment for about three hours until the Sydney Airport reopened for morning flight check-in.


In response to the Minister for Youth & Sports, Hon. Jese Saukuru, the FRU explained the situation and assured that necessary measures would be taken to prevent similar issues in the future. They emphasized the importance of ensuring player and staff comfort and committed to improving communication and logistics with stakeholders to avoid such occurrences during travel andtransit.

The Fiji Airways Fijian 7s team left Nadi on Fiji Airways flight FJ915 at 6 PM on Sunday, November 26, 2023, arriving at Sydney Airport at about 9:40 PM. Since the airport’s international terminal closed at 11 PM, the team checked into the Ibis Sydney Airport hotel. Meanwhile, the Head Coach and the Assistant Coach stayed at the terminal to safeguard the team’s equipment and bags until they could check in at 2:30 AM when the airport reopened. The team returned from their hotel at 3 AM to check in for their scheduled 6 AM flight to Dubai.

The Minister for Youth & Sports conveyed Fiji Rugby’s response to the Honorable Prime Minister, indicating that those who raised concerns with the Honorable Speaker of Parliament were not fully aware of the events that had actually transpired, as clarified previously.

Fiji Rugby would like to emphasize that the rumors circulating on social media suggesting that the national Men’s 7s players were sleeping outside the airport are false and misleading.

The Fiji Rugby Board of Trustees stresses that the welfare of the national teams is a top priority, ensuring they receive the appropriate support, respect, and dignity while representing Fiji on the international stage.

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