Mix-up over coaching interview

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Senirusi Seruvakula. Picture: FILE

The recruitment blunder surrounding Senirusi Seruvakula’s application for the Flying Fijians coaching job was labelled as a “misunderstanding”.

This was according to a source from the Fiji Rugby Union as members of the selection panel concluded the interviews of the five shortlisted candidates.

Initially, FRU general manager high performance Barrie-Jon Mather stated that only four applicants were shortlisted for the job.

The four did not include the Super W winning coach, Seruvakula who received an email on Thursday which stated that his application was unsuccessful.

However, two hours later he received another email stating that he was back on the shortlist. The source said: “Interview was done on Friday at 10.30am. It was a misunderstanding.”

Suva Rugby Union secretary Nemani Tuifagalele described the events as “disrespectful”.

The interview panel is believed to be Youth and Sports permanent secretary Rovereto Nayacalevu, FRU interim board chair Peter Mazey, FRU elite pathway and performance manager Bill Gadolo, Fiji Rugby general manager HP BJ Mather, former Fiji head coach and World Rugby high performance pathways and player development manager Simon Raiwalui and World Rugby rep Mike McGovern.

Seruvakula was the understudy of former Flying Fijians coaches John McKee and Vern Cotter.

The new Flying Fijians coach is expected to be named in mid-February.