Clash of the titans

Namosi's Lepani Raiyala gets a late tackle from Nadroga's Joeli Lutumailagi during their double header match at Lawaqa Park in Sigatoka. Picture: JONACANI LALAKOBAU/FILE.

The feature match of this weekend’s round of the Skipper Cup competition will be the clash of the titans as Nadroga will host Naitasiri at Lawaqa Park on Saturday.

Sigatoka Town will come to a standstill for 80 minutes when the Naitasiri highlanders battle Nadroga on their home turf.

Both teams have lost to Farebrother Sullivan Trophy holders Namosi in past weeks, but for the match on Saturday, both teams will want to win to keep their chances alive in the hunt for the Skipper Cup title.

Outgoing Nadroga Rugby Union president Tiko Matawalu is aware of Naitasiri’s capabilities and predicts the match between two traditional rivals will be tougher than the previous occasions they’ve met.

“Naitasiri has always been a tough opponent at Lawaqa Park and after their loss last weekend, it makes them even more dangerous this weekend,” said Matawalu.

“We will be preparing for a good game because we are aiming for the top four in the competition.”

Naitasiri head coach Dr Ilaitia Tuisese Jr said Nadroga was known to gain momentum in the middle of the season and they had shown that against Tailevu.

“These two teams have a lot in common and we’ve always expected Nadroga to be stronger every weekend especially after losing the Farebrother trophy to Namosi in the second round on their home ground.

“They will not want to make the same mistake and we will also try and minimise ours before we face the Stallions,” said Tuisese Jr.

Weekend fixtures: Friday: Nadi vs Lautoka – Churchill Park Saturday: Naitasiri vs Nadroga – Lawaqa Park – 3pm, Tailevu vs Suva at Ratu Cakobau Park – 3pm, Yasawa vs Namosi – Prince Charles Park.

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