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Highlights: Barbarians and Fiji display the exact nature of what rugby should be

BY Jack Tunney  ·  Monday Jun 24, 2024

Barbarians and Fiji are well known to be two of the most exciting and fluid rugby-playing teams in the world. They emphasise the enjoyment of the game and the freedom to fling the egg-shaped ball around, above all else.

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So, when the two sides met on Saturday, the expectations were set high for a thrilling occasion of festival rugby. Set at Twickenham stadium in front of fans that had already been treated to Wales vs South Africa that day, the sun was shining on what was to be the final international match for many of the players taking part.

Numerous England stars were performing at HQ for what would likely be their final time. Kyle Sinckler, now ineligible for England after signing for Toulon, Danny Care, Ben Youngs and Jonny May, all retired from the international setup, Zach Mercer, Dave Ribbans and Harry Thacker are all a million miles from the England squad.

There was of course the opportunity to view the talent heading to Saracens this summer in the form of Fergus Burke, a playmaker who has been instrumental in the very little that was good about the Crusaders this year.

Among countless others who found themselves performing brilliantly for the invitational side, All Black legend Sam Whitelock captained the black and white hoops, being given a standing ovation as the match concluded.

Watch the full highlights here:

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It was a momentous occasion and a real tribute to rugby. Fans were quick to express their pleasure at the occasion, with one fan summing up the day, saying:

“Loved the Babaas festival attitude and atmosphere that the Flying Fijiians play as well. Nice game for Sam Whitelock to sign off a great career.”

Final score: Barbarians 45-32 Fiji

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