Rugby

 No.10: The Mastermind

The Highlanders will bank on either Kini Douglas or Tuidraki Samusamuvodre to spearhead Naitasiri’s campaign after Etonia Rokotuisawa was red carded against North­land last Saturday.
14 Apr 2021 12:57
 No.10: The Mastermind
Naitasiri first five eight Kini Douglas training at the Stanley Brown Naval Base in Suva on April 12,2021. Photo: Leon Lord

First five-eighths or No.10s play a key role in rugby as they decide, dictate and control the run of play.

They are game changers and the outcome of the game depends on how precise they performed on the day. Simply put, they are the game mastermind.

On Saturday, a lot will depend on the No.10s when Jack’s Nadi defends the INKK FRU Farebrother-Sullivan Trophy in round two of the Skipper Provincial Cup challenge at Prince Charles Park.

Both teams have talented players for the pivotal role but it will all come down as who excels on the big stage on the day.

The Highlanders will bank on either Kini Douglas or Tuidraki Samusamuvodre to spearhead Naitasiri’s campaign after Etonia Rokotuisawa was red carded against North­land last Saturday.

Douglas and Samusamuvodre have the quality having graduated through the ranks after completing secondary school.

Douglas played for the Fijian Drua and more recently teamed up with Police Blue in the Super 7s Series.

Samusamuvodre, 22, is considered one of Fiji’s brightest young No.10s represented Fi­jian Under-20 for two years before graduat­ing to senior honours in 2019. He was captain of the Fiji Warriors during the World Rugby Pacific Challenge where he scored three tries in three games last year.

Samusamuvodre showed his skills with the boot by kicking all points including the win­ning drop goal in Naitasiri’s 9-6 win over Na­droga in the Skipper Cup in August last year.

The Jets boast seasoned reps in Sela Toga and Olympian Vatemo Ravouvou.

Both have survived the turbulence over the years and have been the mainstay for the Jets through thick and thin.

Therefore the Highlanders playmakers need to come up with something special to win the coveted silverware on Saturday.

Speaking to SUNsports, Naitasiri head coach Dr. Ilaitia Tuisese Jnr said the High­landers need to be organised.

“Nadi is a tough side to play against at home and even tougher when they have to defend the Farebrother-Sullivan Trophy,” he said.

“Last weekend when Rokotuisawa was red carded we had to quickly reshape ourselves.

“Players like Viliame Matai, Douglas and Sireli Kaloucava quickly reacted to organis­ing the team.

“For us it’s the senior players who will be doing the talking for both the backline and the forwards.

“We have to be organised when we are fac­ing a good team like Nadi.

“Our players have to take ownership and at­tend to the important things on and off the field.

“We have to be very clinical in our set piec­es, our defence and make sure we finish our moves.”

The Highlanders will have to adapt to the Nadi weather and are working around the clock to properly acclimatize themselves be­fore Saturday.

In other Skipper Cup games, Tailevu vs Northland at Nakelo District School, Rewa host Suva at Burebasaga and Namosi vs Na­droga at Thomson Park, Navua.

feedback: simione.haravanua@fijisun.com.fj

 



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