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Nacuqu’s Humble Beginnings

About 8 kilometres from Ba town, past the gravel roads and sugarcane fields lies Votua Village. It is home to Fiji Airways Fijian 7s rugby playmaker and captain, Waisea Nacuqu
18 Sep 2022 09:30
Nacuqu’s Humble Beginnings
Fiji Airways 7s rugby men’s captain, Waisea Nacuqu, with his family in Votua Village whilst celebrating the Rugby World Cup 7s on Thursday. Photo: KELERA SOVASIGA-TUISAWAU

About 8 kilometres from Ba town, past the gravel roads and sugarcane fields lies Votua Village.

It is home to Fiji Airways Fijian 7s rugby playmaker and captain, Waisea Nacuqu.

On Thursday morning, Nacuqu’s home was decorated in the national colour blue as villagers awaited the arrival to cel­ebrate one of their son’s victory from the World Cup.

As the village is alongside the Ba River, an excited relative shouted, ‘Sa kui na Ba river me yaco I volivoli.’

When translated means the Ba river’s current is strong and it’s fast approaching the beach shorelines.

A saying familiar to the villagers of Votua to describe how their sons have become unstoppable to win victory.

Supportive Wife

Behind every successful man, is a strong woman and wife Mariana Nacuqu who couldn’t be prouder of her husband’s accomplishment.

“The morning of the finals, I couldn’t hold back my emo­tions of happiness when our reps beat New Zealand – there was a show of team work and good leadership,” Mrs Nacuqu said.

“I’m so proud of the Fiji team for coming out victorious af­ter 17 years and to see my husband lead the boys into battle – I’m the happiest wife in the world.”

Her support for her husband has been continuous through the good and bad times.

“We have always been supportive of each other’s careers and this win is a win for everyone no matter what back­ground they come from,” Mrs Nacuqu said.

Excitement and loud cheers filled the village as Waisea Nacuqu arrived back home to celebrate with families.

A proud father

Nacuqu’s father, Adrea Walu, said it’s a dream come true to see his son wear the white jersey to represent Fiji.

“When Waisea was growing up, I would watch him play soc­cer a lot and thought this was going to be the sport that he loved and would one day turn into a career but that changed after many soccer games,” Mr Walu said.

In his soccer days, Nacuqu had represented Tavua in the Battle of the Giants as a striker.

Nacuqu is the youngest of three siblings and the only one in his nuclear family to have represented Fiji.

“We all love rugby, it’s in our blood and to watch my son captain the national team and win the World Cup is a feeling words can’t explain. I am truly a happy father,” he said.

Mr Walu described his son’s journey as not so much an easy one.

“He has been through a lot especially when he has always supported our family and completed building our family home through his hard work,” he said.

“When he was young, he would accompany me whenever we went to the farm or fishing and I would pray that God would use him and lead him wherever he goes.

“I will always remind him to never let go of God because He was the one who opened these doors of opportunity for him and his family.

Nacuqu joins a list of his other well-known cousins who have also made Fiji and Votua Village proud; with the likes of Pio Tuwai, Josua Tuisova and Filipo Nakosi.

Nacuqu – The Winning Captain

Captaining the Fiji Sevens team for the first time was an op­portunity Nacuqu never thought he would get.

The 29-year-old in his quiet manner is thankful to God for His leadership, wisdom and knowledge as he stepped up to the role and not letting other former captains down.

“When coach Ben Gollings offered me the captain’s role, I was very surprised and wanted to turn it down but he en­couraged and told me I was going to be able to do it,” Nacuqu said.

He vividly remembers the atmosphere of that day as the boys prepared their body, mind and soul for a win that has been long overdue for 17 years.

“Before the warm up, we sang that song, ‘Vanua Domoni’, after which I spoke and gave the floor to the boys to share their thoughts. Some of them cried as soon as they started talking,” Nacuqu said.

“We thought of our families and the hardships we had en­countered to get to where we were,” he said.

“There was a lot of talks going around about us because we had lost at the Commonwealth Games and the LA Sevens, but we were not discouraged and kept thanking God.”

Nacuqu said prior to the game, the boys had made up their minds that they would win the World Cup with everything left in them.

“New Zealand was a tough team but we wanted the win more than they wanted it and so as soon the starting whistle blew, we just gave it our all and not holding anything back,” Nacuqu said.

Hearing of the cheers and celebrations back home, Nacuqu reminisces on his young school days and how he used to sit in front of the TV set cheering the national team.

“Our village is always crazy about rugby. Even in my school­ing days, I would always be late to school because I wanted to watch the sevens team play,” he said.

Though he was taken off the field with a shoulder injury, Nacuqu hopes to recover well during the next two months be­fore he can put his rugby boots back on.

“Now that the 2021-2022 series has come to an end along with the World Cup, I am absolutely proud of the players for all their hard work and sacrifices on and off the field,” he said.

“Hong Kong is in November and if it’s God’s will for me to be part of that team, I will be honoured and ready to repre­sent Fiji again,” Nacuqu said.

Feedback: adi.sovasiga@fijisun.com.fj



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