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Merekula: Fijian U18 Ready To Play For U20 Side

Fiji Secondary Schools Rugby Association president Setareki Merekula is adamant that the Fijian Under-18 players are ready to play for the Fijian U20 side. The team returned home yesterday after
08 Oct 2018 10:33
Merekula: Fijian U18 Ready To Play For U20 Side
Fijian Under-18 rugby reps at Nadi International Airport on October 7, 2018. They played three matches on their tour of New Zealand. Photo: Waisea Nasokia

Fiji Secondary Schools Rugby Association president Setareki Merekula is adamant that the Fijian Under-18 players are ready to play for the Fijian U20 side.

The team returned home yesterday after a tour of New Zealand where they beat Wellington Samoa 33-20 in a friendly game, New Zealand Barbarians 15-10 before going down 20-15 to the New Zealand Maori U20 side.

“The boys now have a taste of what it is like to be a national rep,” Merekula said.

“The selectors will be looking for them to make the under-20 side.

“There should be a smooth transition from secondary level to national competition. I would say the tour was a successful one.”

He said every day the players talked about rugby and their input was overwhelming.

“That has really developed the boys. They did extremely well in the tour. I would say it was a success especially when they had to acclimatise to the cold weather in a very short period of time. In fact on our first game we just arrived and played in the afternoon.

“It was really cold but the boys did perform and it was just a warm-up game against Wellington Samoa.  Our two other games were with the New Zealand Maori and New Zealand Barbarians and the boys did well.”

Merekula thanked the Fijian community in Wellington as they made the team feel at home.

“We tried to work together in providing meals during our nine days and it was highly appreciated.

“I can assure the public that rugby has developed and I thank Fiji Rugby for allowing their High Performance Unit staff like Sireli Bobo, Kele Leawere and other staff that actually help lifted the players game to another level.

“They were good at their work since rugby is their bread and butter.”

Halfback Jone Vatuwaliwali suffered an ankle injury along with Watisoni Cabetilomaiviti who was down with a knee problem and missed two games.

 

– Edited by Leone Cabenatabua

Feedback:  waisean@fijisun.com.fj

 

 

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