Fiji Times Logo

Fiji Time: 5:00 PM on Thursday 17 April

/ Front page / Sport

Strong ties and success

Rodney Duthie In The Gold Coast
Saturday, October 13, 2012

TIMOCI Wainiqolo formed a great bond with 1991 Fiji coach the late Ratu Kitione Vesikula to score the winning try that gave Fiji back to back wins in Hong Kong.

Twenty-one years later, he is in a similar environment but this time he is coach and Ratu Kitione's nephew, Tevita Waqairawai, is the manager.

Through this relationship and strong traditional ties, Wainiqolo and Waqairawai are hoping to emulate the success of 1991 at this weekend's Gold Coast Sevens in Australia.

In fact, to Waqairawai, this is about "family".

Waqairawai is the son of the current Ratu Mai Vereta, Ratu Ifereimi and grandson of the late Ratu Ilisoni Qio Ravoka, which past Fiji teams sought strength from before playing in So Kon Po at the Hong Kong Sevens.

Traditionally, Waqairawai and Wainiqolo are related through ancient times.

"We don't have any problems working together. Our traditional relationship is that he's from Bua and I'm from Verata Ucunivanua, we have a close link," Waqairawai said.

"If you follow the traditional migration of Naulumatua, he left Ucunivanua and settled in Bua after he did not follow his father's wishes. We call each other mataqali which is being from the same family. There's ancient ties there that binds us.

"I guess it's something that will enhance the relationship and we hope that through that relationship, it will trickle down to the players.

"And with that relationship, the expectation of this weekend's result will be a good one."