'The road from Nadi to Suva, a four-hour drive, will be lined all the way' Waisale Serevi and Fiji return home today to a tumultuous welcome with the country's Prime Minister Laisenia Qarase having declared Thursday a public holiday to allow the small Pacific nation to celebrate winning the tournament. 'A huge welcome party has been arranged at the airport and I know the road from Nadi to Suva, which is a four-hour drive, will be lined all the way with people waiting to catch a glimpse of their heroes and the Melrose Cup,' said Fijian coach Wayne Pivac before leaving Hong Kong yesterday. The victorious Fiji team left last night for Sydney from where they will take a connecting flight to Nadi this afternoon. Captain Serevi, accompanied by his wife and four-year-old son Serevi Jnr, will alight from the flight with the Melrose Cup in his hands. The trophy will be in Fiji for one year before it is returned to the International Rugby Board. 'Although we are all wearing medals around our neck and the Melrose Cup is going back home with us, I don't think the enormity of what they have done has quite hit the boys yet. That will happen when they step off the plane in Nadi,' Pivac said. Two of their overseas-based stars will not return home - Apolosi Satala who will be flying to South Africa to join his British Army team on tour there and Vilimoni Delasau who will return to New Zealand Super 12 side Crusaders. Reports from Fiji said people had greeted the 29-19 victory over New Zealand in the cup final by letting off fireworks and noisily partying on the normally quiet streets of Suva. 'It is a fairytale come true,' said New Zealander Pivac. 'It's a dream come true for Fiji. I can assure you that there isn't anywhere in the world that it means as much as it does back home in Fiji. I just feel thrilled for the people of Fiji that this team's been able to deliver.' Serevi, who turns 37 in May, confounded those critics who thought he was too old to lead the side, with an inspired display throughout the three days. He started in all of Fiji's eight matches, and finished them all except for a second-half substitution against Portugal on the first day. His mere presence on the field was uplifting and the move to bring him back into the side after missing the last two Hong Kong Sevens was a master-stroke by Pivac. 'A lot of people thought he was foolish to come back and I was wrong to pick him. He told me he could do it and I believed him,' said Pivac, who also coaches the Fiji 15s team, but was asked to take over the sevens squad to Hong Kong just a month before the World Cup. 'He is like a Michael Jordan in basketball. He is a visionary and a leader. He lifts the team on and of the field. There is great sense of self-belief in the team when he is around,' Pivac said. At the post-cup final press conference, Serevi after thanking the Lord for giving him the strength to persevere, said: 'I am grateful to my coach for having faith in me, an old man at 36. My job was to put the others into space, they were working off me.' But against England, Serevi decided to take it upon himself to deliver his country into the final with the sudden-death try that ended England's hopes of becoming the first country to hold the World Cups in both the XVs and Sevens at the same time. A devoutly religious people who love their rugby, Fijians watched on television as Serevi scored the match-winning try against England in extra time in the semi-finals, and then lay on his back praying with both his hands held in supplication. A wire agency reported that crowds had left a live performance by Bollywood star Sonu Nigam in Suva to pack around a small television set outside the auditorium to watch the final and had begun celebrating even before the final whistle had been blown. 'Fiji were deserving champions. It was a great result and a very popular one too,' said Allan Payne, Hong Kong Rugby Football Union executive director. 'The win by Fiji capped off an excellent and successful tournament.'