Sunvoice

Good Tidings With Rugby World Cup 144 days away

We should be grateful that our national sport is in the right space, under the right hands and kudos must go to all stakeholders involved especially to the parent body - Fiji Rugby Union - for being the controlling authority.
29 Apr 2019 16:05
Good Tidings With Rugby World Cup 144 days away
Vodafone Flying Fijians head coach John McKee at the Teufaiva Stadium in Nuku’alofa, Tonga on July 8, 2017. Photo: Atama Tamanilo

Editorial:

With 144 days to go before the 2019 Rugby World Cup kicks off in Japan, it’s always positive that we believe and talk about our chances.

We are a proud island nation punching above our weight now and again, stamping our footprint in the world of rugby.

It’s always good to have that air of optimism around how our Fiji Airways Flying Fijians will fare in the four–yearly global rugby showpiece.

We can confidently say the John McKee-coached side is in the right frame building up to the RWC.

The win 21-14 over France in November could not have come at a better time. It helped kick-start a confident momentum swing towards the RWC.

A strategic planner and a workhorse, McKee has carried out the necessary logistics of the team bases in Japan and everything is in place.

McKee is of the belief that if we work really hard and get everything right, we can be successful in the final phase.

We should be grateful that our national sport is in the right space, under the right hands and kudos must go to all stakeholders involved especially to the parent body – Fiji Rugby Union – for being the controlling authority.

We can’t be thankful enough for FRU putting the system in place for our teams to reap maximum benefits in the end.

The restructure put in place since it was established as a company in 2017 continues to enjoy healthy returns with a promise of more growth.

The reorganisation and engagement of professionals to work at middle management level to support the work of CEO John O’Connor is reaping dividends.

The recruitment of manager sponsorship/marketing, events manager, operations manager, legal officer, manager finance, GM Drua and manager communications/public affairs were all critical portfolios to support the transformation.

Gone are the days when the FRU resorted to lotteries and street appeals to help fund our national team to the RWC or tours abroad.

The FRU annual general meeting at the Novotel Suva Lami Bay on Saturday revealed our financials are better than last year.

The net income of $569,343 in 2018 was up by more than 49 per cent from $281,888 the previous year.

According to the 2018 annual report, FRU’s total income stood at $18,122,540 while expenditure closed at $17,553,197.

The figures show the increased popularity of our brand with more sponsors joining and stringent cost control measures put in place by Rugby House.

The good news could not have come at a better time as RWC looms.

Our chances look brighter and FRU life members Pio Bosco Tikoisuva and Ratu Ilaitia Tuisese believe our Flying Fijians can rise to new heights in Japan.

Fiji Rugby, Flying Fijians are in good hands and praise must go to all those involved in making our national sport tick.

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