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Ben Gollings appointed Fiji sevens coach

December 24, 2021 GMT

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — England sevens star Ben Gollings has been appointed coach of Fiji’s Olympic-champion men’s rugby sevens team.

Gollings succeeds fellow Englishman Ben Ryan, who guided Fiji to the gold medal in the inaugural Olympic sevens tournament in 2016 and Wales-born Gareth Baber who supervised their successful Olympic championship defense this year.

Baber stepped down earlier this year rejoin his family and focus on coaching opportunity in the 15-a-side game.

Gollings was a flyhalf who played for the Harlequins club in England before becoming a superstar in the early days of the World Rugby Sevens Series. He scored 2,652 points which is still the record for a World Series player.

Gollings has extensive coaching experience in sevens, recently with the Sri Lanka and Canada men’s teams.

Fiji Rugby chief executive John O’Connor said Gollings stood out in interviews and will take up his new role in January.

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“We had many great battles when I was playing over the years but since I have shifted into coaching I think there’s no better opportunity than to coach the world’s best team in the sevens arena,” Gollings said.

“I am thankful to Fiji Rugby for giving me the opportunity to coach this team and am looking forward to working with the exceptional group of boys in Fiji. The immediate focus of course is towards the (World) Sevens Series, Commonwealth Games and the Sevens World Cup next year in South Africa.”

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