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Inspired By Grandfather To Play Football

Inspired By Grandfather To Play Football
Filipe Baravilala in control for Suva against Tavua in the Vodafone Premier League on May 13, 2018. Photo: Simione Haravanua
May 14
11:01 2018

Being the first to play football was hard at first for Filipe Barivilala’s family to accept.

But the Suva rep was inspired by his late grandfather Manoa Qalo who had always believed in him.

When Baravilala’s parents got di­vorced, his grandfather stepped in and cared for him.

Baravilala said back then not many Itaukei boys were playing the sport but this did not hinder the 23-year old from making a career in football.

“Everyone was telling me not to take up the sport for it was not made for Itaukei men,” Baravilala said.

“My grandfather had always told me not to give up on my dream and was always pushing me to play foot­ball.

“After he died last year, I knew he would have wanted me to keep mov­ing forward, so I kept on concentrat­ing on my career and my family.”

Now thanks to his perseverance, the Nawaisomo, Beqa native was able to join the Fiji Police Force and is now a special constable.

“I played in the Police Inter-District Championship last year and was lat­er recruited,” Baravilala said.

Baravilala attended Sabeto Sangam School and Nadi Sangam College in Nadi.

Baravilala was part of the U17 na­tional squad that played in New Zea­land and is a former Nadi player.


“One lesson my grandfather has always told me to never give up on something you love, even if no one else believes in you.

“I kept playing despite what every­one said and was able to go to coun­tries I have never been to and this is something I never dreamt I would achieve.”


Baravilala believes Suva has a good chance of winning the Vodafone Fiji FACT later this month.

“Fiji FACT is different from the Vodafone Premier League which we are currently leading at the moment. I believe our team has a good chance of winning but it will require hard work.”

Suva is in Group B with Lautoka, Tavua, Nadi and play their first match on May 25 against Lautoka at 6pm.

Edited by Osea Bola


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