Gutsy Raiwaqa Ready

Underdogs DHL Raiwaqa rugby team are hoping to end their 11 year drought by hoisting the R.C. Manubhai Suva Rugby Union’s Escott Shield at Albert Park today. Team manager Salesi
10 Sep 2016 09:36
Gutsy Raiwaqa Ready
DHL Raiwaqa captain Jitoko Usumaki(left) and Army Green captain Jovilisi Rokoiri(right) at Albert Park yesterday.PHOTO; JUSTINE MANNAN

Underdogs DHL Raiwaqa rugby team are hoping to end their 11 year drought by hoisting the R.C. Manubhai Suva Rugby Union’s Escott Shield at Albert Park today.

Team manager Salesi Tuberi said yesterday that playing Army Green in the final they are going to use the underdog tag to their advantage.

“The boys are really excited about the final because it has been a long time coming for us to be in this position again,” he said.

“We do not have any big names in our team. Most of our players are unemployed but they are passionate about the club and the sport of rugby.”

The Raiwaqa side showed a lot of guts when they scored comeback wins in the elimination rounds.

Tuberi said they last won the Escott Shield final in 2005.

“Obviously, we will be aiming to end our eleven year drought and going in as underdog will be a good thing for us. We all know that Army is by far a much better team and the favourites whereas we are the underdogs and I think the fact that we are going into this game with nothing to lose and everything to gain, that will really pump up the boys.”

He said the other advantage they have is their big number of supporters who are coming from all over the country.

“I have noticed our supporters who have come as far as Vanua Levu to cheer us on are here. They have been on the ground with us and I just want to thank them for the support. So we are hoping to make them proud this weekend.”

The game is at 3pm.



Favourites Army Green have stated that they are hungry to lay their hands on the Escott Shield for the first time.

“This weekend’s game is going to be a real good one, especially for us because we have been in this position many times but never managed to win,” said team manager Major Rokoseru Uluitavuki.

“So the drive is there for us to try even harder. Preparation is coming along well, the team is ready. We have improved on our aspects of team work; the players need to work together because teamwork is everything. There is no ‘I’ in team so we are hoping that the boys work together.”

With Raiwaqa being tagged the underdogs, Major Rokoseru says, they are anticipating an exciting final.

“They (Raiwaqa) are a good side and they deserve to be there but I know that they will field their best so we need to be ready. We are banking on all the supporters to come down to the ground and give our boys that extra boost.”


Raiwaqa: 1. George Robinson, 2. Taito Cavei, 3. Saimoni Nauluvula, 4. Fuata Ikenes, 6 Tukini Tuicakau, 7. Ben Johnson, 8. Jitoko Usumaki (Captain), 9. Rusiate Uluimoala, 10. Taniela Vueta, 11. Rupeni Waqairatu, 12. Peni Kamokorewa, 13. Trevor Tuiqali, 14. Jeke Tupa, 15. Anare Saurara. RESERVES: 16. Josaia Colati, 17. Apisai Vatubuli, 18. Apete Joku, 19. Maciu Raele, 20. Pate Nauluvula, 21. Lemeki Sevutia, 22. Navitalai Domo, 23. Jesoni Vinakailoma


Army Green: 1. Jovilisi Rokoiri (Captain), 2. Kalivati  Tawake, 3. Maxwell Douglas, 4.  Onisimo Naiyato, 5. Daveta Koroitakali, 6. Alivereti Kuruinovo,7.Inia Tukere, 8. Paula Dranisinukula, 9. Noa Lovia, 10. Jolame Davui, 11. Apenisa Uluiviti, 12. Ratu Lalai, 13. Waisea Koroinacuqu, 14. Lepani Kurumudu, 15. Rusiate Tiqa, RESERVES: 16.  Tevita Rabukawaqa, 17. Eneri Lotawa, 18. Manasa Tuidraki, 19. Kelemedi Koroidimuri, 20. Liwa Nacagi, 21. Epeli Kilibau, 22. Marika Vakacegu, 23. Jone Saunivalu, 24. Filipe Koroiravudi, 25. Inia Tawalo


Edited by Leone Cabenatabua




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