SPORTS

Meli’s Time To Shine

Queen Victoria School’s Meli Derenalagi departed with the Fijian Schoolboys for the Tri-Nations Championship in New Zealand. And his father Vuniani Derenalagi, a former national rep under coach Rupeni Ravonu’s
26 Sep 2016 10:48
Meli’s Time To Shine
Ratu Meli Derenalagi with his nephew Pita Bolea jnr at the Auckland airport yesterday. Photo: LITIANA TUIDRAKI

Queen Victoria School’s Meli Derenalagi departed with the Fijian Schoolboys for the Tri-Nations Championship in New Zealand.
And his father Vuniani Derenalagi, a former national rep under coach Rupeni Ravonu’s era, was proud to see his son continue the rugby tradition.

“Rugby in our blood for sure and it has been a while for someone from our family in Nawaka to continue the family tradition,” he said.

“The last one was Semisi Naevo and it is good to see Meli being chosen to be part of the team and I thank the selectors.”

Meli played rugby while at Natabua High School before he moved on QVS during Year 11.

“I always stress to him about education but since he was given this chance so he might just take it. The baseline is if he gets a contract that will be good for him,” Vuniani said.

He is the second eldest of five siblings and loved his rugby just like his father and uncles.

“I am looking forward to this tour and it will be a learning curve as well for rugby and country as well,” Meli said.
Vuniani was nicked-named ‘White Shark’ during his rugby years.

He also played for Nadi before joining the Teachers Eastern Rugby Club in Auckland, that won the Gallagher Shield for three years in a row from 1997 – 1999.

Surprisingly those in the club included Nadi in the likes of Pita Bolea, Lalai Driu, Jolame Nadolo, Apisai Naweilulu, Vilitati Tuilawa and Iliesa Tanivula who later moved on to have a stint in Super Rugby.

Edited by Osea Bola

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