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Fiji First For Frank

Fiji Airways Flying Fijians halfback Frank Lomani has turned down an offer to join Premiership Rugby club Wasps in England. Speaking from Nukubalavu, Savusavu yesterday Lomani also confirmed he would
23 Dec 2018 09:52
Fiji First For Frank
Frank Lomani(right) with his sister Esther Joy at Nukubalavu village in Savusavu on December 22, 2018.

Fiji Airways Flying Fijians halfback Frank Lomani has turned down an offer to join Premiership Rugby club Wasps in England.

Speaking from Nukubalavu, Savusavu yesterday Lomani also confirmed he would not team up with Melbourne Re­bels when the Super Rugby season resumes in February.

His focus is to prepare for the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Ja­pan with the Fiji Airways Flying Fijians.

It was reported earlier this month that Wasps was eyeing to recruit the 22- year old after Wasps No.9 reserves Dan Robson and Joe Simpson were injured and will not be able to play in early 2019.

Lomani said he prefers to come back to Fiji and spend his holiday with his family after a year of hectic rugby.

“The Wasps deal didn’t work out. I just want to come back home and spend time with my family and rest after two years of nonstop rugby,” Lomani said.

“My focus now is the 2019 RWC, prepare well and do my family and country proud.

“I have always wanted to make my family proud every time I play, make my hometown proud and at the same time chal­lenge youths that nothing is impossible.”

RWC 2019

The former St Bedes College student is confident that the Fiji Airways Flying Fijians will reach the Cup final of the 2019 RWC.

“I think we just need more time together. Four days is not enough to beat tier one nations like New Zealand, England and Ireland,”Lomani said.

“A good example was during the Northern Tour where we spent two weeks to beat France.

“Imagine if we prepare for 3-4 weeks the boys will be every­where doing what they love and playing Fiji’s style of rugby.

“The number of quality players we have, competing with tier one nations is not a big deal.

We definitely stand a 100 per cent chance of reaching the Cup final of the RWC.”

When asked about his challenge to one of his mentors and Wallabies halfback Will Genia when Fiji meets Australia in their RWC pool opener on September 21, 2019, Lomani replied; “I don’t see him as how good he plays. Rugby is any­body’s game, whoever wants it more, wins.”

2018 Recap

He applauded his father Beato Raturaciri for his achieve­ment so far

“It was 10 out of 10 for me this year because it was a year of breakthrough for me.

“I’ve been involved with the Swire Shipping Fijian Warriors Pacific Rugby Challenge victory, Fiji Air­ways Flying Fijians Pacific Nations Cup victory, Fiji Airways Drua victory in the Australia National Rugby Challenge and the success­ful ending in the November Tour when we beat France. I also had the opportunity to play for the Barbar­ians against Argentina at Twicken­ham.

“And apart from that was our lo­cal competition assisting Naitasiri to win the HFC Bank Farebrother Challenge Trophy,” he said.

“Not forgetting my short stay with Rebels.

“My family played a huge role in my rugby career, we struggled to live but my dad always motivated me.”

“He gets up early in the morning while we (siblings and mum) we are still asleep to go to work and he comes back home after hours and that’s when we’re already in bed,” he added.

Lomani also acknowledged Fiji Rugby Union High Elite Player Pathway manager Viliame Gadolo and Genia for playing huge role in his rugby career.

“I want to thank Gadolo and HPU Academy in Suva for making sure that I’m always ready to compete in matches.

“And Genia for helping me in my passing and kicking skills that I think have made a huge difference from just playing club footy to Test or internationals.”

POSITIVE

Lomani played an instrumental role for Fiji Airways Flying Fijians, Swire Shipping Fijian Warriors, and the Fiji Airways Drua teams this year playing his magic at No.9 and impressed his fans.

He maintained a consistent per­formance throughout the season and he shares his secret recipe on his positive result.

He shared why he has the word ‘POSITIVE’ written on his arm­band and on his rugby boots.

“Before the game I write the word POSITIVE on my rugby boots. It is written clearly because every time or whenever we’re struggling, I’ll just look down and that word drives me to battle on.

“Before the game I always remind myself that I’m the best and work­ing hard to achieving being the best”

Edited by Osea Bola

Feedback: anasilinir@fijisun.com.fj

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