Rugby | SPORTS

Tevita Ratuva To Debut Tomorrow Against Maori All Blacks

Ratuva made his mark with the Vodafone Fijian Under-20 before forcing his way into the Swire Shipping Fijian Warriors team.
19 Jul 2019 10:30
Tevita Ratuva To Debut Tomorrow Against Maori All Blacks
Tevita Ratuva will make his test debut for the Fiji Airways Flying Fijians tomorrow night against the Maori All Blacks in Rotorua, New Zealand.

Promising lock Tevita Ratuva will make his Test debut for the Fiji Airways Flying Fijians against the Maori All Blacks at the Rotorua International Stadium, New Zealand, tomorrow night.

The 24-year-old was named by head coach John McKee to start with veteran Api Ratuniyarawa.

Ratuva made his mark with the Vodafone Fijian Under-20 before forcing his way into the Swire Shipping Fijian Warriors team.

Standing at 1.98m he joined Bordeaux Begles and played in the French Top 14 competition alongside Semi Radradra and Peni Ravai.

Ratuva, according to McKee, was one of the 10 changes from the team that beat the Maori All Blacks 27-10 at Suva’s ANZ Stadium last Saturday.

McKee said they expected a different and challenging match this weekend.

“The host team will want to bounce back on their home territory and turn the tables on us,” he said.

Veteran prop Campese Ma’afu makes his start for the season together with hooker Veremalua Vugakoto and Lee-Roy Atalifo in the front row. Ratuva partners Ratuniyarawa in the locks while Fiji Airways Fijian Drua captain Mosese Voka will be on the flanks with captain, Dominiko Waqaniburotu.

Henry Seniloli starts at halfback while Alivereti Veitokani is at five-eight. Jale Vatubua and Patrick Osborne return to boost the backline. McKee said it was important to give all the players game time ahead of the World Rugby Pacific Nations Cup and the Rugby World Cup in Japan.

“It was always the intention across these two matches to give players in our squad opportunity and game time in the lead up to the PNC.”

“It is important that these players grab this chance and make a strong statement.”

McKee said windy conditions in Rotorua would mean quite a different match to the hard, fast and dry ANZ Stadium last weekend.

Screenshot 2019-07-19 at 9.37.21 AM

Edited by Naisa Koroi

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