The Fijian team celebrate with their gold medals
The Fijian team celebrate with their gold medals

RIO DE JANEIRO (Diya TV) — Fiji is celebrating its first Olympic gold medal in the nation’s history after their thrashing of Great Britain in the men’s rugby sevens final at the Rio Olympic Games Thursday. For Fiji head coach Ben Ryan, the win was extra special, he used to serve in the same capacity for the England Sevens team.

These games marked the reintroduction of rugby to the Olympics for the first time since 1924.

For the Britons, there is no disgrace in their silver medal efforts — Simon Amor’s players will return home with their own rich haul of Brazilian memories, having beaten New Zealand, Argentina and South Africa en route to a final few expected them to reach. When they finally reached that final, Britain found themselves stacked against an opponent classes ahead of them in the sport in the 43-7 final.

The Flying Fijians proved too strong and quick for a disorganized and sloppy Great Britain side, running five tries past them in the first half alone. Britain made its best efforts to tighten up in the second half, but Fiji still added one more converted try before a consolation try and conversion. One more try in the final minute completed the rout.

Perhaps no Olympic medal will be celebrated more vociferously. For a country that has endured so much misery this year with the cyclone that claimed 44 lives, this was their chance to smile as well as announcing itself on the world stage. One government official estimates that the gold medal will generate 500 million Fiji dollars in tourism and investment. But more than that the money it is about the pride as Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama, who was just another supporter in the stands, put it.

“It’s history in the making. We are all proud to be Fijians right now. We hope the brand of rugby we played today justified the inclusion of rugby in the Olympics and it also propped up tiny nation like us. We don’t have the monney and the bucks that Britain has but we managed to beat them.”

What did the Fijians do after capping off their Olympics cinderella story? Well, they just wanted a Big Mac.