27 Oct 2015

Sport: Fiji hockey shows improvement

11:48 am on 27 October 2015

Fiji men's hockey coach Shaun Corrie believes his team showed significant improvement during last week's Oceania Cup.

The Pacific champions finished a distant third behind Australia and New Zealand, and ahead of island neighbours Samoa after winning the bronze playoff 11-1.

The Fiji men's hockey team at the Oceania Cup.

The Fiji men's hockey team at the Oceania Cup. Photo: Facebook / Fiji Hockey Federation

Despite conceding a combined 29 goals against the Trans-Tasman big guns, Shaun Corrie insists their performance was much better than in the past.

"We got into the circle against both Australia and New Zealand [and] we got corners against Australia and New Zealand but we couldn't finish it off. These are quality sides being ranked in the top seven in the world for both teams. Playing against the top two guns was exciting and now we've learned a whole lot during the course of the week. These big games hardly come our way and we've bettered our scores against Australia and New Zealand when we played ten years ago in 2005 here in Fiji so the guys have improved and I'm proud of the boys performance".

Shaun Corrie says the biggest challenge for Fiji hockey's ongoing development remains a lack of funding, with rugby, netball and football the main sports back home.

It was also the reason Fiji were unable to send a women's team to the Oceania Cup, while Samoa sent two teams, having not contested the Pacific Games earlier in the year.