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Home victory

Emoni Narawa And Rashneel Kumar
Sunday, May 25, 2014

NATIONAL sevens rep Leo Naikasau scored a solo try, timed a bone crunching tackle and wrapped up his performance with the man of the match award.

The stocky winger helped Namosi defeat Nadi 23-6 in their Skipper Cup duel at Thomson Park in Navua yesterday.

Naikasau waited patiently out wide to impress but felt he needed to do the extras by moving into the contact area at times.

This resulted in his perfectly timed crunching tackle on Nadi fullback Veni Ratubalavu, who later had to leave the field.

Ratubalavu's territorial kicks were Nadi's strike weapon until he was replaced. He opened Nadi's account with a penalty to lead 3-0. His opposite number Iona Tuivuna evened the scores via a penalty and both teams were locked 3-all at the break.

Namosi started the second spell with a bang, driving into Nadi's territory using its bigger forwards.

Fly-half Jimilai Biumaiwai scored Namosi's first try after receiving a back-pass from inside-centre Simione Nakuna.

Tuivuna converted for a 10-3 lead. He added another six points from two penalties before Naikasau kicked a Nadi loose ball and regathered to score under the post as Tuivuna was successful with the conversion.

Nadi's first five-eighth Kavenikini Varo converted the visitor's second penalty to settle the score at 23-6.

Coach Timoci Wainiqolo was satisfied with the win. However, he felt they needed to improve their game next week.

"I'm thankful for the win," he said.

"The boys played well and full credit to them. We needed this win to win back the support of our fans. We have lost few games here at home and it is a good feeling to finally win again in front of the home fans."

Nadi's assistant coach Watisoni Naqei said Namosi played a good game.

"We got a lot of new boys in the team," he said.

"They gave their best shot and we still have to go back and improve on few areas like our scrums, lineouts and decision making that let us down today (yesterday)."

Meanwhile Lautoka Rugby Union is not happy with the Fiji Rugby Union's decision to award the match points to Ovalau.

Lautoka was to travel to Ovalau for the game but couldn't because their travel expenses were not paid.

LRU secretary Salesi Vulakoro said they requested the money for travelling from FRU but received no response from them.

Vulakoro said they informed the FRU of their decision on Friday.

He said the amount they requested for was $4197.

"I also called the Ovalau secretary and told him that we couldn't come because FRU didn't finalise the passage payments," he said.

"We had the meal and accommodation money and all we needed was the passage money. I gave them the quotation on Monday and made several calls to follow on the progress but didn't get any update.

"Yesterday (Friday) FRU called and told us that they have sent the referee and officials but we had already told them that we will not be going.

"We will appeal FRU's decision because what they did is not fair. We will travel any day to play as long as they pay for our passage to Ovalau."

When Times Sport contacted FRU for comments on Friday, it responded saying "we are still awaiting responses from both unions regarding your query before we can respond".








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