Super Rugby Pacific: Trio to remember for Vatulele youths

Youths of Vatulele in their hat woven out of coconut fronds ahead of the Fijian Drua and Melbourne Rebels match at the HFC Bank Stadium in Suva on Saturday, April 1, 2023. Picture: MELI LADDPETER

A group of youth from the island of Vatulele travelled all the way to Suva to witness the Swire Shipping Fijian Drua and Melbourne Rebels match yesterday, and say the experience at the Suva turf will be one they will cherish forever.

Luke Matanisiga, a farmer from Lomanikaya on Vatulele, says the youths consisted of young men from the village who carried out traditional clean-up campaigns called solesolevaki around the island.

The 46-year-old brought with him a total of 10 youths from their village to witness their first-ever Drua match live.

“All our finances were accounted for by one of my relatives. We came down to Suva to bring fish and farm produce for our relatives living here in Suva,” he said.

Matanisiga said the boys deserved the trip to Suva because they had been working hard for the past few weeks carrying out the solesolevaki.

“I think it’s good for them to come out once in a while and experience something as special as the Drua match,” he said.

“They were all excited when they found out that we would be going to watch the game, and we will try hard to watch the Drua’s next home game.”

According to Matanisiga, majority of the youths were farmers on Vatulele and had never been to such events in their lives.

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