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U19 to face tough opponents in NZ

Zanzeer Singh
Wednesday, April 23, 2014

THE Ravinesh Kumar-coached Fiji under-19 team will play the likes of Waitakere United on its New Zealand tour.

The team departed for Auckland yesterday and will face a New Zealand-based Fiji youth club tomorrow.

The trip has been made possible by New Zealand Fiji Football Inc and New Zealand Football.

The team will also play against the New Zealand U20 which has already qualified for the 2015 FIFA U20 World Cup as hosts.

The tour will serve as a build-up for the Oceania Football Confederation U19 playoffs in Suva next month. Kumar said they would be playing against tough opponents.

"It will be a great experience and build-up for the team ahead of the regional playoffs," he said.

"We will be playing several games on the trip facing the likes of Waitakere United and the New Zealand U20 team.

"There will be other games against good clubs also. This will give the boys a lot of exposure. There are no major injury concerns."

Jale Dreloa, who captained the last Fiji U20, is likely to be given the leadership role for the first couple of games.

According to Kumar, the leadership could be rotated with other players capable of leading the team.

"This tour is very important because the more games the boys play, the better they will become.

"Jale Dreloa will be leading the team as he was the last Fiji U20 captain. But we have several other players who have a chance to serve in that role.

"We will move to Suva upon our return depending on the availability of the ground and the weather conditions."

Meanwhile, two players will join the squad next week after sorting out their visa issues.

The team will return on May 9.


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