Naitasiri reveals secret ingredient

Naitasiri flyhalf Kini Douglas delivers the ball during training at Navuso Village ground yesterday.Picture ATU RASEA

THE Naitasiri rugby team has revealed the secret ingredient for their success over Namosi and Nadroga in the HFC Bank Farebrother Challenge.

They are hoping to maintain the winning performance against Tailevu in the final challenge on Saturday.

After being thumped by Nadroga in the Skipper Cup semi-final last month, the Highlanders took a different approach in their preparation towards the Farebrother Challenge that led to their consecutive wins with one more challenge to overcome.

Coaching staff member Sailosi Naiteqe Sr said five former players were assisting head coach Koli Sewabu in trying to set a standard for the provincial team.

“The loss in the semi-final has really been an impact towards the team’s successful run against Namosi and Nadroga. We have focused on their discipline off-the field and we saw the outcome for the past two weeks,” Naiteqe said.

“Discipline outside the field carries weight on the performance of the boys and it led to their winning performance, so we will try to maintain that as we prepare for Tailevu this Saturday.

During the team’s training session at Navuso Village ground in Naitasiri, former Nadroga coach the Rev Joji Rinakama reminded the players to be humble and not to underestimate their opponent.

Naiteqe said playing against Tailevu would not be an easy game because of the 2013 upset that kept haunting them.

“We don’t want to repeat what happened in 2013 when we won the title from Nadi and defended against Suva but Tailevu ripped it away from us and we know they have the calibre of players to create an upset on Saturday but I know the boys will not give in easily,” Naiteqe said.

Former Naitasiri players such as Apisai Rinamalo, Ratu Emori Tuisese, Asaeli Naiteqe, Ilaitia Tuisese Jr, Ratu Peni Naulivou, Maseikula Gaunavou and other former reps gathered at Navuso to show their support for the team before the last challenge against Tailevu.

The Naitasiri Rugby Union officials called for the assistance of Naiteqe Sr and the Rev Rinakama to work alongside head coach Koli Sewabu and trainers Vereniki Tukana and Ilaitia Tuisese Jr and Lasarusa Senibale to bring the team to a winning standard.

Naitasiri will face Tailevu on Saturday at Ratu Cakobau Park in Nausori.

The match will kick off at 3pm.

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