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Final battle

Rashneel Kumar
Monday, June 23, 2014

NADI coach Kamal Swamy has reminded his players to focus on football as the Jetsetters gear up for the final battle in their pursuit to defend the Vodafone Fiji FACT title at Ratu Cakobau Park in Nausori this weekend.

The side made a scrappy start in the tournament beating Navua 1-0 and Lautoka 3-2 before going down to group winner's Suva 0-1 yesterday.

Nadi will play Ba in the opening semi-finals at 3pm followed by Labasa versus Suva match at 5pm this Saturday.

The loss has not deterred Swamy's men as they eye redemption in the knockout stage this weekend.

Swamy said money was second to his players and playing good football was the main priority.

"Playing football is one thing, sponsors and money are other. First they have to become a footballer then all these things will follow," he said.

"There is an opportunity for the players to play in the national team and I believe that is the biggest incentive."

Nadi with youngsters Napolioni Qasevakatini, Mataiasi Toma, William Valentine and Jolame Vukivuki has one of the talented squads in the tournament.

With experienced players such as Benaminio Mateinaqara, Lekima Gonerau and Amani Makoe guiding the team, Nadi despite qualifying as the runner-up from the group stands a good chance of retaining the FACT title.

Swamy said discipline was their major downfall as some senior players were rested against Suva to avoid consecutive yellow cards.

"We will be working on discipline and I will be talking to some senior players about it because indiscipline can cost us dearly and we need to rectify that."

Undefeated Suva which has emerged the tournament favourites after impressive wins over Lautoka (3-0) and Navua (4-1)is relying on its superb combination to claim the first tournament of the season.

Coach Gurjit Singh said recovery would be their priority this week.

Suva led by inspirational captain Ravinesh Karan Singh and with youngsters Nickel Chand, Jale Dreloa, Sakaraia Naisua, Sahil Dave, Antonio Tuivuna guided by veteran Pita Rabo, the Capital City side looks unstoppable in the tournament.

"We will also be looking at our combination which has been working really well and I think we got a strong bench to take us through this tournament," Gurjit said.





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