SPORTS

Drua Must Lift Game, To Boost Ticket Sales

The Swire Shipping Fijian Drua players and officials must sacrifice their Easter weekend to prepare for their Super Rugby Pacific clash against the Blues at AAMI Park in Melbourne, Australia, on April 23. This is an important match for the Fijians. An upset win or to even taking the Auckland-based side down to the wire, will surely boost the tickets sales of their Suva clash against the Highlanders on April 30.
14 Apr 2022 10:46
Drua Must Lift Game, To Boost Ticket Sales
Swire Shipping Fijian Drua players gather for a pre-game prayer ritual. Photo: Fijian Drua

The Swire Shipping Fijian Drua players and officials must sacrifice their Easter weekend to prepare for their Super Rugby Pacific clash against the Blues at AAMI Park in Melbourne, Australia, on April 23.

This is an important match for the Fijians. An upset win or to even taking the Auckland-based side down to the wire, will surely boost the tickets sales of their Suva clash against the Highlanders on April 30.

After the Drua’s 33-12 loss to the Brumbies last Saturday, stand-in captain, Meli Derenalagi said, hav­ing a bye this weekend should help them work on their game before the Blues clash.

To play against the Blues is not easy. Our players must bring their A-game on the day.

The Blues are of a higher level, when compared to teams like the Waratahs, Force, Rebels, Reds and Brumbies who have beaten us so far.

Former All Blacks wing Jeff Wil­son has ranked the Blues ahead of the Crusaders as the team to beat in Super Rugby Pacific.

Speaking on The Breakdown, Wil­son listed the top five teams in his Super Rugby Pacific power rank­ings, with the Blues edging the Crusaders at the summit of his list.

It comes after the Auckland-based franchise kept the Chiefs scoreless for the first time in Super Rugby history when they beat their rivals 25-0 at FMG Stadium Waikato in Hamilton last Saturday.

That victory, according to Wilson, was highly impressive and under­lined the breadth of depth and quality throughout Leon MacDon­ald’s squad.

The former 60-test international added that, after that win, the pres­sure is now on the Blues claim the inaugural Super Rugby Pacific ti­tle after having ended their 18-year championship drought by winning Super Rugby Trans-Tasman last year.

“This was difficult, but I’m going to do it. Clearly it’s the Blues,” Wil­son told The Breakdown while ex­plaining why the Blues topped his power rankings.

“For you to go down to FMG Sta­dium, to take on the Chiefs in such good form… to see Beauden Bar­rett doing this (setting up tries), to see them defending the way that they’re defending, the pressure’s on them now to deliver on a title.

“That’s what the pressure is at. They delivered half a title last year. They’ve got their opportunity to deliver the full one. Their squad is strong. They’ve got Roger Tuivasa-Sheck coming back. Akira Ioane will be back. They’ve got depth, their young guys are stepping up, they’ve got everything they need to be a champion.”

Wilson’s claim that the Blues are currently the best team in the competition left the Crusaders in second spot on his power rankings, despite the Christchurch-based franchise having the same win-loss record as the Blues this season.

This is a big challenge for the Mick Byrne- coached Drua side.

Yes, we understand that it has been a learning process for the Drua especially in their debut year but we’ve got to realise that they need to start winning or at least be competitive, if they are to keep the hopes of their fans alive and the ticket sales of the Highlanders clash ticking.



Got A News Tip


Get updates from the Fiji Sun, handpicked and delivered to your inbox.


By entering your email address you're giving us permission to send you news and offers. You can opt-out at any time.


Subscribe-to-Newspaper