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Top 7s teams for Nawaka tourney

Maciu Malo
Saturday, February 03, 2018

THE 32nd Fiji Bitter Nawaka 7s was launched at Nawaka Village on Thursday night boasting a total sponsorship of $36,000.

The tournament which has produced some of the country's finest rugby players has attracted the best 7s teams in Fiji in their quest to win the top award.

Defending champion Cross of Victory Taveuni will be joined by two other Taveuni teams, First Light Taveuni and another unknown team.

Nawaka Rugby president Joji Konisi thanked Paradise Beverages for the commitment and the partnership over the years, making the Nawaka 7s as one of the best annual 7s event in the country.

He said the loyal support of their sponsor had contributed to the success of many grassroots Fijian players.

Konisi said the tournament had also helped in the development of the vanua, church and education at Nawaka.

"We have many people to thank especially our sponsors Fiji Bitter, they have been there for us all throughout 31 years," he said.

"It is a unique tournament with traditionalism meeting commercialism that is why we are so grateful, the sponsorship and the income from this tournament not only stops on the ground as it touches the very fabric of our community. It goes to the churches, our very homes, schools for our kids and that is why it is so important for us.

"The tournament also produced some of the best 7s players even most of our village boys went on and did marvelous things on the international scene.

Pacific Beverages marketing manager Joe Rodan said the Fiji Bitter had been sponsoring the Nawaka Sevens for the past 31 years with the aim of supporting grassroots rugby.

"Nawaka 7s gives an opportunity for players to showcase themselves and we know that there are a lot of young players out there who are knocking on the door of the Fiji team," he said.

"We are happy for Nawaka 7s not only because of identifying players, but more importantly for the development of Nawaka itself.

"A lot of our players don't have it academically, but they have talent in sports and we need a tournament like this to expose them."

The sponsorship includes $30,000 cash and $6000 worth in kind.

The Nawaka 7s will be played at Prince Charles Park in Nadi from February 23-24.

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