Fri, Dec 15, 2023, 6:29 AM
Nathan Williamson, RA

Former Wallabies coach Robbie Deans will coach the Barbarians against Fiji in June 2024.

The Barbarians confirmed the fixture on Thursday, which will be the first time the Fijians play since their golden run to the Rugby World Cup quarter-finals.

Were thrilled to be returning to Twickenham and facing Fiji, a fixture that always brings huge enjoyment to players and fans alike," Barbarians President John Spencer said in a statement.

As we saw so brilliantly demonstrated during the mens Rugby World Cup 2023, Fiji play rugby with huge passion and creativity on display very much the style of the Barbarians.

"The Killik Cup 2024 will be an incredible showcase of passion, flair and fast-paced rugby from both sides. We cant wait.

It'll be the sixth time Deans will coach the famous team, including defeating the Fijians in 2016.

Deans last coached the side in 2019 when they took on Wales.

Im very excited to return to Twickenham, Deans said. Its a place where you step out into that arena, and you just want to lace up your boots and play. Obviously, you cant do that forever, so Im looking forward to making the most of this opportunity to get back there.

Its a privilege to pull that Barbarians jersey on, and well certainly be motivated to put on a show and play with the classic, free-flowing style of the BaaBaas.

"For me, the Barbarians are the gatekeepers of the soul of the game. Witnessing that unbelievable Barbarians try at Cardiff Arms Park in 1973 is what latched me onto the game, and Ive got no doubt that it had the same impact on a lot of people.

The moment ignited the spirit of the Barbarians. The game was amateur at the time, and now obviously people are well-paid professional players, but the Barbarians remind us all that rugby is still a game at the end of the day, and that we have a responsibility to the generations that follow.

It'll be the first time Fiji returns to Twickenham since their historic 30-22 win over England in August.