Bro Helps, I’m On Track

Nikola, a former Flying Fijians and national 7s star halfback now plays for Glasgow Warriors in Scotland and missed selection
30 Oct 2020 12:49
Bro Helps, I’m On Track
Peni Matawalu (left) with Jone Koroiduadua at the Nadi International Airport on October 27, 2020. Photo: Waisea Nasokia

Flying Fijians halfback Peni Matawalu would not be at the team’s camp in Limoges (Haure, Vienne) in France without the financial support of his older brother, Nikola Matawalu.

Speaking to SUNsports, Matawalu said after their dad passed away it was Nikola’s financial support that kept them going.

Nikola, a former Flying Fijians and national 7s star halfback now plays for Glasgow Warriors in Scotland and missed selection.

He was highly rated by former Warriors and now Wallabies head coach Dave Rennie.

The brothers hail from Dama in the province of Ra.

“I’m on track in following my big brother’s footsteps,” the 23-year-old said.

“I always wanted to be like Nikola and to play for the Flying Fijians.”

Matawalu is among the nine local-based players who are part of the Vern Cotter coached-side to play in the Autumn Nations Cup 2020 next month.

Right: Flying Fijian, Nikola Matawalu.

Flying Fijian, Nikola Matawalu.

The Flying Fijians face France on November 15, Italy on November 21 and Scotland on November 28 in Murrayfield.

“I’m looking forward to be part of this team and this will be a great experience to be playing against the tier-one nations,” Matawalu said.

“To play for your country is the biggest dream a player can achieve at all cost. I thank God that my rugby career has come this far.”

Matawalu said he wants to learn from the experience and also by playing alongside Melbourne Rebels halfback Frank Lomani.

He said being employed by the Fiji Corrections Service has assisted him in terms of discipline.

“It is good for the long run and that is where I see my career lies.”

The former Lelean Memorial School student previously played for the Fijian Drua in the Australia National Rugby Championship and for the Fijian Warriors in the Pacific Rugby Championship.

“All my rugby training gave me an added boost to endure the tough 14-week of basic recruitment programme at Naboro.”

Matawalu reiterated that he was always grateful to his late father for their upbringing and his brother, Nikola, for stepping in to support them from his professional rugby earnings.

Edited by Osea Bola


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