SPORTS

Drua’s Super Move Starts

“It will be a genuine, direct pathway for Fijian players in clubs, through to Drua and into the Flying Fijians na­tional team. This will be the most important thing that’s happened to Fijian rugby in decades.”
30 Apr 2021 10:23
Drua’s Super Move Starts
Frank Lomani was the Fijian Drua’s vice-captain when they won the Australia’s National Rugby Championship in 2018. He now plays for Melbourne Rebels in the Super Rugby AU and could return to play for the Drua in next year’s Super Rugby. Photo: Fox Sports

Overseas inter­ests have been ex­pressed on the positions of the Fijian Drua’s chief executive officer and head coach.

This was confirmed to SUN­sports yesterday by Fiji Rugby Union chief executive officer John O’Connor.

“I’ve received emails from those who are interested in the CEO and head coach’s jobs,” O’Connor said.

“I’ve told them that the ad­vertisement for the jobs will be out on Saturday.”

The advertisements will be published in Saturday’s Fiji Sun.

The FRU was granted a provi­sional licence by New Zealand Rugby for the Drua to partici­pate in next year’s Super Rug­by competition.

Established in 2017, the Fiji­an Drua won the Australia Na­tional Rugby Championship in 2018, in only their second year in the competition.

This is under the new ex­panded format of 12 profes­sional teams- five New Zea­land teams, five Australian teams, Moana Pasifika and the Drua.

O’Connor also indicated that overseas-based players have also expressed their interest of joining the Drua and play­ing in the Super Rugby.

“We will also be advertising the Drua coaching staff and management positions as we move on,” he said.

He said that 37 players are go­ing to be contracted in the first year along with the 28 coach­ing and management staff as well.

O’Connor highlighted that negotiation with investors has been going well.

Former Wallabies centre Morgan Turinui welcomed the Drua’s inclusion.

“It’s an exciting time,” Tu­rinui told Wide World of Sports.

“It will be a genuine, direct pathway for Fijian players in clubs, through to Drua and into the Flying Fijians na­tional team. This will be the most important thing that’s happened to Fijian rugby in decades.”

2021 Tests

The proposed Ireland tour to play three Test matches against the Flying Fijians in July is in doubt because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We are still continuing dis­cussions with Ireland Rugby but it is highly unlikely be­cause of the pandemic and the disruption of flights.”

O’Connor said with the Wales Test in November, again, eve­rything will depend on the im­pact of the pandemic.

Feedback: leonec@fijisun.com.fj



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