25 named in Residents squad for two matches

Western Simon Wise runs towards the Eastern deffence in the Fiji Rugby League trials at Bidesi ground yesterday.Picture ATU RASEA

THE Fiji National Rugby League organised a trial between the East and the West rugby teams at the Bidesi Ground in Suva to select the Fiji Bati Residents team that will take on two overseas teams later this month.

The western team comprises players from the Nadroga Navosa zones, Nadi and Lautoka whereas the eastern side featured players in the Suva, Nasinu and Ra zones. Newly elected Resident coach Vela Tawake said time was not on their side to prepare a team for the three matches ahead of them.

“We’ve selected 25 players today (yesterday) that will represent the Fiji Bati Residents in the next few weeks against the Australian Affiliated States rugby league team and the British Amateur Rugby League Association,” Tawake said.

“My challenge now is the limited time of preparation for the three matches, we have just monitored players through some of their past games and fitness tests and this trial.

“Our selection criteria was based on the performance of the current Residents’ squad but we’re also focusing on the development of local players so we’ve managed to select a balanced squad that comprises new players and the current squad.”

The Residents play their first game on November 17 at Lawaqa Park in Sigatoka and their second match on the 20th at Nadi’s Prince Charles Park.

FIJI Bati Residents: Apakuki Tavodi- Nasinu, Tikiko Noke- Nadi, Jerry Balenamawi-Suva, Phillip Shaw- Nasinu, Semi Kabakaba- Lautoka, Mel Narawa-Nasinu, Savenaca Naovuka -Nadi Jegesa Ilisavani – Suva, Rusiate Ratu- Lautoka, Maika Serulevu-Nadi, Eparama Rubuni- Nasinu, Josua Rokonavuloro- Nadi, Roger Qoro- Nadi, Kelevi Komaisavou-Suva, Timoci Namotukula- Nadi, Ro Seru Vereniki- Nasinu, Ilai Nareki- Nadroga, Maciu Kalou-Nadi, Wame Turaganivalu – Suva, Jone Nabetelevu- Nasinu, Simon Wise- Nadi, Richard Fiu – Nasinu, Simeli Vatanitawake- Nadi, Penioni Tagituimua- Nasinu, Vereti Bukavesi- Nadi. Vela Tawake- head coach, Josaia Rabele – assistant coach, Chris Tomlinson – team manager, Asaeli Masilaca – trainer.

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