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Former Saracens and Racing lock to coach Fiji at World Cup

NEWS: Former Saracens and Racing Metro 92 lock Simon Raiwalui will coach Fiji at the Rugby World Cup, it was announced Friday.

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The 48-year-old replaces New Zealander Vern Cotter, who quit just seven months before the tournament in France.

Auckland-born Raiwalui, who grew up in Australia, was high performance general manager of the Fiji team before his appointment.

The Fiji Rugby Union has not said whether Raiwalui will remain in charge following the World Cup, which starts in September.

“Raiwalui is no stranger to Fiji Rugby,” said the union’s deputy chairman Daniel Whippy in a statement.

“I believe being a former captain, it will be smooth sailing for him and the team, especially with the Rugby World Cup just around the corner.”

The union said Raiwalui is still to announce his assistant coaches.

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Raiwalui played for Fiji and the Pacific Islanders combined team before retiring from international rugby in 2006.

As well as Saracens and Racing, he also turned out for English Premiership side Sale Sharks and Welsh club Newport during his playing career.

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