Rugby | SPORTS

Semi ‘The Beast’ Kunatani Is Out To Prove His Worth

He admitted the tough competition from Johnny Dyer, Nemani Nagusa, Mosese Voka, Dominiko Waqaniburotu, while Viliame Mata and Peceli Yato are in the top 20 rugby players in the world.
29 Jun 2019 12:23
Semi ‘The Beast’ Kunatani Is Out To Prove His Worth
Vilimoni Botitu (left) and Semi Kunatani. Photo: Waisea Nasokia

Semi ‘The Beast’ Kunatani wants to be among the Fiji Airways Flying Fijians team on the plane to Japan for the 2019 Rugby World Cup in September.

He aims to convince head coach John McKee that he is one of the top loose-forwards in the game and deserves his first RWC.

Kunatani is among the 42-member squad, which starts camp on Monday to prepare for the first Pacific Series Test match and against the Maori All Blacks on July 13 at the ANZ Stadium in Suva.

He admitted the tough competition from Johnny Dyer, Nemani Nagusa, Mosese Voka, Dominiko Waqaniburotu, while Viliame Mata and Peceli Yato are in the top 20 rugby players in the world.

“We all strive to win the battle of the loosies and be on that plane to Japan,” he said.

“It won’t be easy, but I have to prove my worth. There are plenty good players like Yato, Mata, Nagusa, Voka and Johnny.

“It is all our dream to represent Fiji one day and help the Flying Fijians do really well.”

Kunatani joined Harlequins last year after a stint with Toulouse in France. His two-year contract ends next year.

“The year was a bit difficult but as it goes on I began to adjust myself to the system with my new club,” he said.

Kunatani yesterday handed over the Kombat Sportswear to the Nadi Airport School yesterday.

“It is a big boost for the children to see their role models as they only watch us on TV,” he said.

“I urge sportspeople not hesitate to visit the children if they are invited.”

The 42- member squad assembles in Suva on Monday before relocating to the Coral Coast where they will train at Lawaqa Park on Wednesday, and Thursday before hitting the famous Sigatoka Sand Dunes National Park on Friday.

The Flying Fijians July squad:

Props: Leeroy Atilifo, Campese Ma’afu, Eroni Mawi, Peni Ravai, Manasa Saulo, Luke Tagi, Kalivati Tawake, Joeli Veitayaki

Hookers: Mesulame Dolokoto, Samuel Matavesi, Tuvere Vugakoto

Locks: Tevita Cavubati, Leone Nakarawa, Api Ratuniyarawa, Tevita Ratuva, Albert Tuisue

Backrow: Johnny Dyer, Semi Kunatani, Viliame Mata, Nemani Nagusa, Mosese Voka, Dominiko Waqaniburotu, Peceli Yato

Halfbacks: Frank Lomani, Nikola Matawalu, Henry Senioli, Serupepeli Vularika

First five –eighth: Ben Volavola, Alivereti Veitokani

Centres: Levani Botia, Sevanaia Galala, Semi Radradra, Jale Vatubua,

Utility Back: Josh Matavesi

Wingers: Vereniki Goneva, Filipo Nakosi, Waisea Nayacalevu, Patrick Osbourne, Eroni Sau, Josua Tuisova.

Fullbacks: Kini Murimurivalu, Seta Tuicuvu.

Edited by Osea Bola

Feedback: waisean@fijisun.com.fj

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