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Emoni Narawa
Saturday, July 19, 2014

FIJI National Rugby League will be associated with the Fijian franchise that will feature in the New South Wales Cup competition in 2016.

This was confirmed to Times Sport by FNRL chairman Reverend Immanuel Reuben.

While the franchise would be run by rugby league icon Petero Civoniceva and Greg Browne, Reuben said FNRL would only supply players to the club that would be known as the Fiji NSWRL Bid Team.

He said Civoniceva and Browne would cater for all expenses including players' contracts.

Civoniceva and Browne announced the news earlier this week that they had secured the rights for a franchise rugby league team to play out of Fiji in the NSW Cup competition.

The Fiji team bid received endorsements from the New South Wales Rugby League Board, FNRL and the Fiji Sports Council, according to rugby league planet.

"It is good news to us," Reuben said.

"We have won the bid to have a Fijian club to feature in the NSW Cup competition. Petero (Civoniceva) and Greg (Browne) will run everything on our behalf but we will work closely with them in supplying players.

"We have to sit down again and discuss the players' contracts and other issues before we compete in the competition."

Reuben said after FNRL had supplied players to Civoniceva and Browne, in return, the duo would conduct referees and coaching clinics to further develop the sport in the country.

He added Fiji would have a lifetime opportunity to witness rugby league at its best when local players rub shoulders against other teams in the competition.

"This is a huge development because it will be an opportunity for players to be contracted overseas and then they'll conduct clinics to help our officials and coaches."

He said only the best players from around the region would be selected.

"We have the Top 8 competition going on right now and from there we will select the best players to be part of this club.

"We will make sure that players are represented from around the country. It will be an opportunity for players to impress and aim for overseas contracts. This team will only be made of local players."

The home ground of the team will be the ANZ Stadium in Suva.





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