Rugby | SPORTS

Drua For Semis

Swire Shipping Fijian Drua’s Kitione Taliga showed his class at first five eight when he played for Jack’s Nadi rugby side in their 27-22 win over Tailevu on Sat­urday.
11 Jul 2022 16:00
Drua For Semis
Jack’s Nadi first five eight Kitione Taliga kicks a penalty against Tailevu in the Skipper Fiji Rugby Championship clash at Ratu Cakobau Park, Nausori, on July 9, 2022. Photo: Ronald Kumar

Swire Shipping Fijian Drua’s Kitione Taliga showed his class at first five eight when he played for Jack’s Nadi rugby side in their 27-22 win over Tailevu on Sat­urday.

Taliga and his Drua team-mates are definite starters for their respective provincial un­ion teams in the Skipper Fiji Rugby Championship semifi­nals on July 23.

Nadi hosts defending champi­ons Ram Sami Suva at Prince Charles Park while INKK Fiji Rugby Farebrother Trophy holders Nadroga travels to Nau­sori to play Naitasiri at Ratu Ca­kobau Park.

Speaking to SUNsports on Saturday, Suva team manager Nemani Tuifagalele said he was hopeful the Drua players would be available for the semifinal clash against Nadi.

The Capital City side fielded nippy halfback Leone Nawai in their 21-21 draw against Namosi at the Suva Grammar School grounds.

“Nadi is a classy side and dur­ing the season they had been playing some good rugby,” Tuif­agalele said.

“I’m hoping some of our Drua players will be available when the semifinal week comes around.

“Leone Nawai played for us and was very instrumental in the last 15 minutes of the game.”

He said they are looking at the availability of centre Apisa­lome Vota, Tevita Ikanivere, Tuifagalele Sorovakatini, Me­sulame Dolokoto, Meli Dere­nalagi, Manasa Saulo and Meli Tuni.

Derenalagi, Tuifagalele and Tuni are undergoing injury re­hab

“If everything goes well, the paper work is good then fans will watch these boys play for Suva,” Tuifagalele said.

Nadi apart from Taliga is rely­ing on the availability of open­side flanker Vilive Miramira who is still recovering from an injury sustained during the Su­per Rugby Pacific competition.

“Having the Drua boys back in provincial rugby will add depth and bring a different dimension to the final weeks of the Skipper competition.”

Tuifagalele added that Nadi was a strong team.

“They are the Skipper points’ table leaders and will be strong at home.

“It’s unfortunate that we are not having a home semifinal.

“It is going to be tough but with good preparations anything can happen.”

Drua lock Chris Minimbi cap­tained Naitasiri as they romped to a 36-5 win over Rewa at the Burebasaga ground.

Minimbi’s Drua team-mates of first five eight Tuidraki Sam­usamuvodre and Frank Lomani are expected to start against the Stallions while tighthead prop Samuela Tawake is under in­jury cloud.

Nadroga who beat Northland 26-12 at Gatward Park, Korovou, are expected to be strengthened with the return of their Drua players of Jone Koroiduadua, Timoci Sauvoli, Nemani Nagu­sa, Ilaisa Droasese and Rusiate Nasove who made his debut for the Vodafone Flying Fijians in the Pacific Nations Cup.

Seniors results: Suva 21-21 Na­mosi, Tailevu 22-27 Nadi, North­land 12-26 Nadroga, Rewa 5-36 Naitasiri.


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