NEWLY-selected Naitasiri rugby coach Sailosi Naiteqe has named his first training squad to start preparations for the rugby season.
Naiteqe takes over from Reverend Joji Rinakama who had been at the helm for the past four years.
Senior players from last year that have been retained in the training squad includes veteran skipper Sainivalati Vunibola, Dan Ligairi, former national under-20 captain Jese Cirikisuva and former national sevens reps Timoci Vakadranu and Dale Tonawai in the forwards.
Former Flying Fijians halfback Waisale Vatuvoka has been named in the backs along with some exciting players Kolinio Vunaki, Temesia Roko, Jo Naisilisili, John Stewart and hard working Nemani Vecenayawa.
After his selection, Naiteqe has promised to take the team forward from where Rinakama left in his development of Naitasiri rugby.
Naiteqe is not new to Naitasiri rugby as he was part of the management team that helped Naitasiri win its first Farebrother-Sullivan Trophy after beating Nadroga in 1998.
Naitasiri lost in the semi-finals of the Digicel Cup in 2011 and in the final last year while they were also unfortunate to lose out in the Farebrother challenge in 2011 and 2012.
The Highlanders last victory in the two competitions was in 2009 when they defeated Nadi for the Farebrother title and beat Nadroga in the Digicel Cup final in 2010.