SPORTS

Women’s Teams Urged To Register

Only two women’s teams have registered for the Tabadamu 7s, sparking concerns that the tournament will not have a women’s competition this year. So far, only western-based Nadi Aviation and
07 Jan 2020 14:55
Women’s Teams Urged To Register
From left: Tabadamu 7s manager Leo Naikasau, tournament director Malakai Yamaivava and the Basic Homes Fiji Limited chief executive officer Mosese Volavola in Vatuwaqa, Suva on January 6, 2020. Photo: Simione Haravanua

Only two women’s teams have registered for the Tabadamu 7s, sparking concerns that the tournament will not have a women’s competition this year.

So far, only western-based Nadi Aviation and BLK Stallions have registered for the tournament, scheduled for January 10-11 at Prince Charles Park in Nadi.

The organisers had aimed to field 12 women’s teams, with the winner getting $2000.

The prize money for the men’s and youth’s competition is $5000 and $1000 respectively.

To enter, women’s teams have to pay $250, while the men pay $500.

Tournament Director, Malakai Yamaivava, said the organisers are still awaiting registrations from other women’s 7s teams from around the country.

If they do not receive any more registration, the tournament will proceed with the two teams playing a final, Yamaivava said.

“We are concerned because we want to develop women’s 7s rugby in the country,” he said.

“The aim here is to get them exposed to this kind of 7s tournament because it will help their rugby in terms of skills and game time so all in all it’s a learning curve for the ladies that will be playing.”

The lack of participation points to an important trend in women’s rugby in the country.

While men’s teams get the lion’s share of public support, sponsorship and media coverage, women’s teams are largely left to fend for themselves.

The disparity is even starker at club level, with women’s teams usually struggling to put together the funds needed to enter a tournament.

This, of course, has implications at national level.

While the Fiji Airways Fijiana 7s side is improving, a big factor hampering their game is the small player pool in Fiji.

But with the Fijiana XVs side reaching the 2021 Rugby World Cup, there is hope that the women’s game will receive more attention.

“The doors are still open for the teams to register until Thursday, so I urge all the team’s interested to come on aboard,” Yamaivava said.

“To have them in our tournament will be a huge boost for the ladies that play 7s in the country and we know the abundance of talents that we have in the country.”

“If the number of teams participating remains the same we will still have to continue,” he said.

“The two teams have negotiated their entry fee so they’ll play the final and the winner takes it all.

“We are urging women’s teams to register and come join the fun and the experience of the competition this weekend.”

Edited by Sheldon Chanel

Feedback: simione.haravanua@fijisun.com.fj

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