Fiji sack their coach for serious misconduct

Fiji national rugby coach Ilivasi Tabua was fired on Wednesday for serious misconduct, the Fiji Rugby Union said in a statement.

Union chairman Bill Gavoka said Tabua’s contract was terminated over an alcohol-related incident which occurred during the recent Pacific Nations Cup tournament, hosted by Fiji.

Gavoka said Tabua had been found guilty of misconduct unbecoming a person in his position.

“The national coach is a role model to his players, fellow coaches and to the many young rugby followers around the country,” Gavoka said.

“It is one of the most senior positions in the organization and one that has to be held in high regard.

“The incident is serious enough to warrant termination, more particularly when it occurred during the tournament in which the team rules had specifically prohibited alcohol consumption.”

Tabua, a flanker who represented Fiji and Australia, and earned the nickname “Human Skewer” for his heavy defense, became coach of the Fiji High Performance Academy in 2006 before replacing Wayne Pivac as national coach in 2007.

He coached Fiji to the quarterfinals of that year’s World Cup in France, to a world ranking of eighth, and to second place behind the Junior All Blacks in this year’s Pacific Nations Cup.

No further details of the incident were released.

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