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Tamanitoakula: We Worked As A Team

Tamanitoakula: We Worked As A Team
Fiji Women U19 football team at the Nadi International Airport last night. Photo: WAISEA NASOKIA
July 26
11:10 2017

Team work enabled the Vodafone Fijian women’s Under-19 football team to finish second in the Oceania Football Confederation U19 Women’s Championship, says captain and Golden Boot Award winner Luisa Tamanitoakula.

Speaking to SUNsports last night, Tamanitoakula said given such a big role to lead the side, team work was their main priority and the result spoke for itself.

“This is another turning point for women football in the country,” she said.

“To win the silver medal in the OFC competition means this is the highest achievement for any women’s football team representing the country.”

The AD Patel College Year 13 student said there were a lot of people to thank for supporting their journey to the OFC competition.

“I’m excited to get this award and it’s for our late goalkeeper Francine (Lockington). I started my football career at a very young age as we in Ba just love to play the sport.”

Tamanitoakula hails from the chiefly village of Nailaga in Ba and played for AD Patel College in the Vodafone Secondary Schools Championship in 2014 where she scored 10 goals. She was the youngest member of national senior women’s team that played at the 2015 Pacific Games in Papua New Guinea.

Her cousin and fellow Nailaga native Ateca Tuwai took out the Golden Gloves Award. Tuwai is currently a first year student at the Fiji National University where she is doing a diploma in teaching.

“It is such a blessing to win the award since Francine took it last year. She challenged us and it really motivated me. As a team we’ve been through a lot together and we really bonded well.”

Tuwai is the niece of former Ba and national star striker Taito Bula.

“I’m looking forward to the Pacific Mini Games in December and hope that we will play event better,” the Fijian women’s U19 goalkeeper added.

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