SPORTS

It’s Unreal, Says Surfing Nominee

Despite growing up in the village of Namatakula in the Nadroga/Navosa Province, where many of the world’s rugby stars are from, Tibinaliva chose to take up surfing at a young age
09 Feb 2020 15:05
It’s Unreal, Says Surfing Nominee
Fijian surfer Avisai Tibinaliva.

Fijian surfer Avisai Tibinaliva could not believe his luck when he was named as one of the nominees for the Junior Sportsman of the Year’s Award.

The 18-year-old was at the Nominee’s Cocktail at FMF Gymnasium, Suva on Friday night and told SUNsports that he was nominated after helping Fiji ranked 23rd in the world.

“I feel good that I’ve reached this far to be nominated for the Junior Sportsman of the Year’s award and it’s unreal when I look back at the choice I made,” he said.

“To be nominated with the big stars such as Jerry Tuwai is unreal that is why I did not regret choosing this beautiful sport of surfing.

“This achievement will make my family, friends, workmates and sponsors proud of me.”

Tibinaliva said his goal is to become a professional surfer this year.

Despite growing up in the village of Namatakula in the Nadroga/Navosa Province, where many of the world’s rugby stars are from, Tibinaliva chose to take up surfing at a young age

“I’ve been surfing for seven years so I started when I was 10-years old and competed at the age of 13.

“I’m the first from my village to surf because in my village we are known for breeding rugby and rugby league players.

“Surfing for me is good for my future as my family members and friends compete with me.

“I was inspired by a friend who said, that surfing is a fun sport and the fact that not all kids will be rugby or football stars, so I decided to try it out at an early age.

“That friend of mine also advised me that I will get to travel the world.

“I didn’t regret the choice I made to become a surfer and it has been a tough journey but it’s worth it.

“Now I get to travel the world and visit new places that I only can dream of.”

Tibinaliva said he works at the Fiji Beach House and that’s where he learned how to surf.

“I used to take the tourists to Namotu Island for surfing and at the same time I was learning.

“The Beach House is my main sponsor who provided me with my surfing board and funds my overseas trips.

“The previous competition I went to was the 2019 Junior World Surfing competition in Japan.”

Tibinaliva urged children around the country to try out surfing and experience the changes it can bring to their lives.

“It’s good to go around the world and compete in world stages at the same time I learn different culture, experience different lifestyle and food, for me it’s really a huge experience.

“That is where I get exposure and experience from.

“It’s a fun sport that can take you to places.”

Edited by Leone Cabenatabua

Feedback: leonec@fijisun.com.fj

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