Bank of Fiji release $7 bills to honour Olympic champions

Fiji's men's Rugby Sevens team won gold in Rio last year

Bank of Fiji release $7 bills to honour Olympic champions

Leone Nakarawa of Fiji celebrates his try in the Olympic final. Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan

Fiji won their first ever Olympic medal last year, when the men's Rugby Sevens team claimed gold in Brazil.

The gold medal win was one of the stories of the Olympic Games, as Fiji became the first men's side to win gold as the sport returned to the Olympic programme. Since returning home, the players and coaches have become national heroes.

In recent months, the team have been widely lauded at home. Last weekend, their immortality was assured when the Fijian Government released a $7 note. It is the first known note of that denomination in existence.

The back of Fiji's $7 note. Picture by: Fiji Government/ Facebook

Two million of the $7 (€3.10 approx) notes were released by banks last weekend, along with one million 50 cent coins commemorating the win.

Ben Ryan, the English-born coach, who has become a national hero in the Pacific country has been given pride of place on the 50 cent coin.

Fiji's new 50 cent coin. Picture by: Fiji Government/ Facebook

Barry Whiteside, Governor of the Reserve Bank of Fiji, said plans were made to release the note, as soon as Fiji won gold last August.

While adding that the process of designing and adding new notes or coins takes between a year and 18 months, Whiteside felt the need to get the money into circulation as quick as possible.

"We are pleased that we are able to deliver to all Fijians a high quality banknote and coin that would mean a lot to many Fijians and an inspiration to aspiring sportsmen and women as well as our children."

As the only $7 bills in the World, Fiji's new bank notes are sure to become collector's items for sports fans and currency fans alike.