31 Oct 2015

Fiji coach still irked by missed opportunities at World Cup

7:12 am on 31 October 2015

Fiji rugby coach John McKee admits he's still frustrated his team was unable to claim a major scalp at the World Cup.

The Flying Fijians finished fourth in the so-called "pool of death", pushing England, Australia and Wales close without being able to finish the job.

Fiji winger Aseli Tikoirotuma looks for support in their 2015 Rugby World Cup match against Australia.

Fiji were competitive against Australia, England and Wales but fell short of victory. Photo: AFP

The Flying Fijians were praised in many quarters for their performances against the tier one giants, and widely recognised as the best performing Pacific Island nation at the tournament.

But, after returning home and completing a thorough review of their efforts, John McKee admits he still wonders what could have been.

"Frustration, really, for me personally. I think we played very well against some very strong opposition but disappointing that we didn't come away with at least one result against one of the big three teams in our pool. There's nothing I'd say we should have done differently - I think the combination of match preparation and training camps worked very well. For us it really shows small errors really can be costly and in those games we made some unforced errors or gave away some avoidable penalties, which cost us dearly in the end".

John McKee says Fiji Rugby now needs to switch their focus immediately to preparing for the 2019 World Cup and to make sure all their plans are in place a couple of years in advance.

Fiji rugby coach John McKee.

Fiji rugby coach John McKee. Photo: AFP

Fiji, Samoa and Tonga have yet to qualify for that tournament and McKee says he understands the first stage in that process could begin as early as next year.