Fiji Time: 5:08 PM on Wednesday 21 February

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Halemehi targets 7s spot

Paulini Ratulailai
Monday, May 29, 2017

HALEMEHI Tuilomania is hoping to secure a spot in the Fiji deaf women's 7s team as they prepare for the World Deaf Rugby 7s competition in Sydney Australia on April next year

The Fiji deaf team had its trials at Buckhurst Ground in Suva on the weekend.

They will begin their build-up in the Australian deaf games which will be held in January next year

Since this will be the first year that 7s rugby is introduced into the Australian deaf games Tuilomania is confident that she will make it through since she is an experienced AFL player.

The 23-year-old said representing Fiji in the AFL national team was not a surprise.

"I've travelled the world playing for Fiji in the AFL as I am the only deaf person in our team," she said.

"For me, I play wing and it's not a new thing for me as for the other girls they seem to try hard to understand but as a team we can do this together.

"It takes patience, determination and faith to come this far and for me being deaf challenges me and also motivates me to prove myself that my disability is not a barrier when it comes to play sports," Tuilomania said.

The Tiliva, Kadavu lass said with the 7s team setting a platform in the 7s arena they would also show that they could play as good as our Olympians.

She began playing Australia football in 2013 joining their development team and came to Gospel School of the Deaf High School.

"Two reasons I love playing AFL is because I always watch it because I have a cousin in Australia who plays for Port Adelaide, Alipate Carlile.

"We never miss his games and that's where the interest rose so when a team from AFL came to school I decided why not and try it out," she said.

She is also preparing for the AFL IC games that will be held in Melbourne this August.

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