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Spring, First Flying Fijian From Rabi Island

He plays for Stade Fran­cais Paris Rugby Club, along with national cap­tain Waisea Nayacalevu.
11 Nov 2021 12:36
Spring, First Flying Fijian From Rabi Island
Vodafone Flying Fijians rep Henry Spring.

Henry Spring, with maternal links to Rabi, is the first from the is­land to don the Voda­fone Flying Fijians jersey when he came in the last 15 minutes to replace Sam Matavesi in their 43-13 Test win against Spain on Sunday.

He plays for Stade Fran­cais Paris Rugby Club, along with national cap­tain Waisea Nayacalevu.

Stade Francais plays in the Top14 domestic league in France and is one of the most successful French clubs of the modern era.

The former Samabula Pri­mary School student cap­tained the champion Queen Victoria School’s (QVS) Under -15 rugby team in 2015 that won the Coke Zero Deans title after defeat­ing Ratu Kadavulevu School, 10-6.

The following year, he captained the Nasinu Secondary School (Nasinu Panthers) Under-15 Rugby League side that beat Natabua High School 20–16 in the Vodafone Fiji Secondary Schools rugby league U15 final at Lawaqa Park, Sigatoka.

In 2017, he secured a scholarship to study and play in France. He has been there since.

His former Milo Kaji coach, Vil­iame Momo, said his breakthrough into the national squad at the age of 20 was no surprise.

“Henry is the type of player every coach dreams to have under his wings. He does not speak much, a committed player who when he takes the field runs through de­fense,” Momo said.

“He plays in the forwards. He was picked up from Under-9 right through to U-14 (2009 to 2014) he was part of the Suva kaji team. He was quite a big boy for his age and very humble.

“Right from day one, we knew he would one day don the Fiji jersey and he has done it – when I saw him come on from the reserve bench on Sunday his kaji days flashed in my mind.

“It is an honour to be part of his pathway to professional rugby, a channel of development for a great rugby player to be where he aspires to be.”

Spring, 20, from Tabwewa, Rabi, is number four in a family of seven siblings.

According to Momo, Henry was in the same team from U-9 for Suva Kaji, with Kaiviti Silktails outside back Vuate Karawalevu, who has signed up his NRL career with the Sydney Roosters.

“Henry was Number 8 while Vuate (Suva Primary School) was full­back,” Momo said.

According to Fiji Rugby Union Chief Executive Officer John O’Connor, the Vodafone Flying Fiji­ans team to take on Wales in their second test on their Europe tour will be named tomorrow.



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