Fiji Times: The Fiji 7s team to the Youth Olympic Games to be held in Nanjing, China will travel without their mentor Ben Ryan.
The Vodafone Fiji 7s coach was to guide the under-18 team for the Games which will be held from August 16 to 28.
According to a statement from the Fiji Rugby Union, Ryan was advised by Doctor EmosiTaloga against travelling long distances and that he would need to rest in order to fully recover.
Ryan earlier told Times Sport that he underwent ankle surgery while on holiday in London and was recovering well.
“I’m really disappointed that I’m not able to go with the team. Always proud to lead a Fijian side in any occasion and I’ll be their number one fan at home,” Ryan said.
“The team needs to make the most of the opportunity and turn the best talent in the competition into the best team in the competition.
“The team is in great hands and I have a lot of faith in them.”
Team manager Sale Sorovaki said Ryan’s unavailability was unfortunate for the team adding it would not hinder their preparations for the Youth Olympics.
He said they were on the lookout for a replacement.
“It is unfortunate that Ben cannot make the trip, but this is a great opportunity for the young boys to be exposed at this level of competition, especially the Youth Olympic Games,” said Sorovaki, the FRU’s development manager.
“As usual there will be a lot of scouts at the games, so this will be a good opportunity for the boys to expose their talents.
“We are fortunate though that Ben and Telecom Fijiana coach IliesaTanivula will continue to assist the team with preparations before we leave.”
The team will leave the country on Monday.
– Fiji Times