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Fijian influence

Sikeli Qounadovu
Saturday, December 02, 2017

THE United Arab Emirates Rugby Federation states that Fijians have contributed a lot to the growth of rugby in the UAE, and it is something they value a lot.

In an interview with this newspaper, Qai Al Dhalai, the Secretary General for the UAE Rugby Federation, said the late sevens guru Epeli Lagiloa and countless other Fijians had helped inspire and influence the growth in interest and love for rugby in Dubai.

"Definitely the Fijians have contributed a lot to the growth of the UAE rugby," Al Dhalai said.

"Don't forget one of our previous head coach was the late Epeli Lagiloa and also we have a couple of Fijians who have represented the UAE some years ago, so definitely Fijians have contributed to the growth of rugby and they are true ambassadors of Fiji.

"The Fiji Ambassador is a very close friend to us and also the previous one as well. So all in all our house is in order when it comes to the Fiji population in the UAE."

He added the UAERF was blessed to have the services of Fijians.

"They play a fair game, they play from the heart, this is how we know the Fijians. They don't play for money and Fijians are people who really love rugby

"Rugby is in their blood so I know everybody will be very lucky to have Fijians in their territory and we are also lucky to have Fijians living in the UAE especially in Dubai and Al Ain. I would like to thank the Fijian population who are living here for their contribution to rugby and to the UAE rugby as well."

There are more than 200 Fijians residing in the UAE.

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