Race Against Time

Unions must meet August 31 deadline to submit list of vaccinated players, officials
27 Aug 2021 16:29
Race Against Time
Naitasiri rugby prop Apakuki Naivanawalu gets his second jab from Staff Nurse Komal Nand at Albert Park, Suva, on August 26, 2021. Naivanawalu, is a former Fijian Warriors and Fijian Drua rep who is after a spot in next year’s Drua squad for the Super Rugby competition. Photo: Leon Lord

Provincial union officials are working around the clock to produce their list of players who have been vaccinated to the Fiji Rugby Union before the August 31 deadline. The list of names is for the senior men’s, senior women’s, development squads and for the under-19 teams.

Fiji Rugby Union chief executive officer, John O’Connor, told SUNsports yesterday the focus is on the vaccination of the players, management officials and union executives.

“We’ve given a deadline for all the names to be submitted to us as we plan ahead in the starting of all competitions,” O’Connor said.

He indicated that it is important that they adhere to all the COVID-19 requirements set by the Ministry of Health.

O’Connor said they are looking at various options and are considering the costs that are associated with each option.

The options are:

  • Teams to be in their own bubbles.
  • Making special application to Ministry of Health (similar approach to FFA)
  • Awaiting lifting of restriction by Ministry of Health
  • Playing without spectators and if not, then spectators must be fully vaccinated.

O’Connor said they are also sticking with World Rugby’s ‘back to play protocols’ which is important for players’ welfare, for the players to be given a minimum four weeks to prepare themselves before the competition gets underway.

The FRU is hoping to start all competitions by mid- October with the Skipper Provincial Cup to be an intensive affair.

This is important for the local-based players as they stand a chance to be selected for the Flying Fijians, Fiji Warriors, U20 and for the Fijian Drua side that is expected to play in next year’s Super Rugby comp.

The Drua are contracting 37 players for the Super Rugby comp and will also have about 20 players as part of the standby players in case of injury.

Edited by Osea Bola





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