Letters to the Editor – Monday, January 28, 2019

The sea of blue during the Fiji Airways Fiji and Wales during the HSBC Hamilton 7's. Picture: RAMA/FILE

Unity in diversity

When it comes to sevens rugby, Fijian passion is unquestionable.

At the Hamilton sevens, the Fijian supporters were in such numbers that it looked like a home tournament for Fiji.

What was even more astounding was the huge number supporters of Indian origin, former and residents of Fiji, beside their iTaukei brothers and sisters.

The stadium was literally turned into a sea of blue.

After Fiji’s win over Australia, the stadium was close to being empty as the Fijian supporters had left.

The Fijian supporters were clear winners off the field.

Let’s see if former Fiji residents in Australia and those planning to travel to Sydney can back it up this weekend.

Through sports, unity in diversity.

Mohammed Imraz Janif, Natabua, Lautoka

7s resurgence

Hamilton 7s winners Fiji and the road to 2020 Olympics defence has begun.

Just like in 2014 when Ben Ryan conceived a Fiji sevens resurgence after few years being dormant.

We are beginning to see a replica of the resurgence and if Gareth and his boys continue with this consistency nothing will stop the team from repeating the feat.

Lastly, the fans went wild in Hamilton and this type of fan base in a foreign country is weird and exotic.

You will never see this happening anywhere and a new tradition is growing with the next base Sydney.

Let’s not forget the management, trainer scientist, manager and everyone who assisted.

Like what Karl Tenana said in Hamilton, it’s like playing in Nadi or Suva.

Joka fans, joka sevens, sa laveti na rara.

Shalwyn Prasad, Mukta Ben Place, Nabua, Suva

Trouble looming

While travelling towards Nadi from Lautoka, on the opposite side of the entrance into Vuda from the highway, there are several corrugated roofing irons tangled among tree roots and rocks.

There are full pieces and off cuts.

This is clearly visible if one looks straight ahead at the cliff while leaving the Vuda Rd.

It is at a location where the road gets divided into four lanes and many drivers do not resist the temptation to increase speed.

People wait for public transportation metres away from this area oblivious to the danger around them.

Every school morning, there are three brothers who attend Nadi Airport School, seen waiting for the bus.

If the roofing irons somehow get untangled, it could prove to be catastrophic for someone or some people.

Mohammed Imraz Janif, Natabua, Lautoka

Touching moment

The touching gesture by our 7s gladiators on the smiling ball girl was heartwarming.

She was not expecting a sky posing treat by the team of the tournament other than her job description.

I cannot imagine what is going on in her mind as she looks down from above, heartening to see the last bursting prayers of our boys.

Vakurinabili sent her out with a giant gentle kiss on the cheek that made her bounce out of the field wearing a full smile on her face.

To me, our boys had already made her day even before she called it a day.

Who knows, the experience can be a life-changing one on this young beautiful lady.

Vinaka team.

That was truly humbling.

Waisale Moce, Nadarivatu

Fitting recognition

It is very fitting that cave rescue divers Dr Richard Harris and Dr Craig Challen have been named 2019 Australian of the Year “for their heroic efforts in saving 12 boys from a flooded cave in Thailand” (CT 25/1/19).

They give Australians a reason to be proud of being Australian in the international arena.

That’s a good counterbalance to the way the political leadership has treated refugees and asylum seekers who have been dumped and left in limbo in our offshore concentration camps in Manus and Nauru.

They by contrast bring-shame upon our country.

Australia needs more Australians such as Dr Harris and Dr Challen.

I salute them for making us feel proud to be Australians.

Rajend Naidu, Sydney, Australia

Social engineering

With such turmoil in the education sector it is only right that we should try to go beyond daily data to get an understanding of what is afoot.

Australia attempted social integration and got a “stolen generation”.

New Zealand tried “Pepper-potting” Maori families.

What is the education department up to?

Is the Government embarking on a huge project of social engineering, trying to homogenise our society like milk in a bottle, mixing everything up, destroying faith schools and diversity, moulding a new generation in “its image and likeness”.

If so, parents have a right to be asked if they really want to be guinea pigs in a social experiment.

This is not what we voted for.

Father Kevin McGuire, QE Drive, Suva

Pay issue

I am not surprised about the recent teachers’ pay saga.

I believe this is the second time it has happened and places attention on the HR department of MOE.

I ask that they put themselves in the teachers’ shoes.

I beseech the MOE to have some sense of humanity as these teachers have hungry mouths to feed.

Most will fear speaking out for fear of intimidation and being victimised.

Over the past years I believe teachers have been scapegoats.

I must salute all teachers for their hard work and commitment.

Kudos to you all teachers.

Bill Kunavatu, Lautoka

Our society

It saddens me that we live in a society where “whom we know” matters more than “what we know”.

Shintika Kumar, Davota, Tavua

Police attack

There is a rise in attacks on police officers.

Attacks on police officers means undermining and challenging the law.

These types of actions have to be squashed with authority.

Mohammed Imraz Janif, Natabua, Lautoka

No visits

I am wondering what has changed.

Our ministers are no longer visiting places of worship.

Ummmm … no $1000 hand outs too.

I guess not every one is perfect.

A Shariff Shah, Savusavu

Bus cards

How is it that the $2 bus card ran out of stock?

Nigel Fiu, Owls Perch, Lautoka

7s victory

I thought that there were more Fiji flags in Hamilton yesterday than in Fiji.

Hearty congratulations to the 7s team.

Your faith and persistence got you through.

Defence was awesome.

God bless you all.

Allen Lockington, Kava Place, Waiyavi, Lautoka

Great shot

Great screenshot as Tuimaba runs from halfway untouched to score in the quarters with Fiji fans in the background jumping with joy.

The stadium was 75 per cent filled by Fijians.

So very true.

A person goes out from Fiji, but Fiji never ever will go out from their heart.

I am very proud to be a Fijian.

A Shariff SHah, Savusavu

News gap

I commend the Media Watch Group for revealing that The Fiji Times outnumbered the other newspaper in terms of daily news coverage in the newspapers last year.

I believe that our number one newspaper The Fiji Times has a wider reach and more readers because it covers from a fair angle and as I wrote in my Saturday’s letter that The Fiji Times thrives because it ensures that it covers “the good” and “the bad”.

Rajnesh Ishwar Lingam, Nadawa, Nasinu

Thank you

Thank you boys for displaying a good game and bringing smiles on all of our faces.

Thank you to the fans for cheering our boys in the stadium.

Thank you for giving all the other sports personalities a lesson of humility by lifting the ball girl.

Thank you for listening to the coach and improving your discipline on the field.

We are all behind you come Sydney next weekend.

Alvin Chand, Labasa

Joy to watch

The magical flying Fijians were a joy to watch.

The traditional Maori welcome and the fantastic crowd support spurred the Fijians to produce a class act.

Placed in a “brutal pool”, Fiji started strongly and walloped Wales.

Our boys absorbed pressure from the Pumas and came out victorious.

Fiji then took ownership of possession and priceless turnovers to hand the Aussies their 12th consecutive loss against Fiji.

The match was a close call and those who cast a doubt on Fiji’s ability to retain the title must realise that the Aussie squad which played Fiji was almost the same squad which won last year’s Sydney 7s.

On day 2 quality starts to rise and Canada after the 49-10 humiliating loss to the hosts, was determined to oust Fiji and led by Hirayama, Douglas, Connor Braid and Pat Cabe, the Canadians led the onslaught.

However, the promising Fijian talent, huge effort at breakdown, the phenomenal skills, emphatic off-loads, spectacular passes, patient buildup, and the “burning legs” of our gas men led Fiji to play stunning rugby.

The enticing effort displayed by our boys was also a result of the massive and tremendous crowd support and it was a joy to see Fiji’s flag fly high.

Our boys were therefore riding on a massive wave of support and did not hesitate to confront the opposition and put up those big hits.

Furthermore, jersey number 11 seems to be having some magic.

Last year it was Sau and this year Tuimaba.

Derenalagi was also labelled a “revelation” by commentator Karl Te Nana.

Thus, the vision by Gareth Baber to expose young talents is paying dividends.

As I penned my letter, our boys were to play Africa in the semis.

This year’s Hamilton 7s showed that the level of competition has intensified.

As I conclude, I acknowledge our ardent fans in Hamilton for being so passionate and for the much-needed power.

The chanting “Go Fiji Go” seemed to drive fire power in our boys.

To the hudda tasa gang in Hamilton — Ravinesh Chand, Vishal Lal, Avishesh Kumar, Dinesh Reddy, Shamal Chand and Dhirend Sharma, you guys rocked.


Rajnesh Ishwar Lingam, Nadawa, Nasinu


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