Naitasiri wins at home

A lineout throw-in from the match between Naitasiri and Tailevu. Picture: ELENA VUCUKULA

It was a close battle between the Naitasiri rugby team and Tailevu at Naluwai ground in Naitasiri yesterday.

The home side won the physical encounter 29-23.Fijian Drua lock Chris Minimbi played for the Naitasiri team and flyhalf Alifereti Veitokani wore the number 10 jersey for Tailevu.

Naitasiri manager Maciu Koroi thanked the players for fighting till the last whistle. “Naitasiri preparation towards every game is the same all throughout,” he said.

“There is no difference in every game we have been playing from the first match till today(yesterday).”

Koroi said they were grateful with the return of Fijian Drua lock Chris Minimbi.

“‘Chris is looking for game time with the Naitasiri team and he showcased a good performance with Tailevu. My message to the boys during half time was to lift up their game in the second half.

“Tailevu came out strong in the second half but I’m thankful to our players for defending their territory.”

Koroi thanked the Naitasiri fans for turning out in numbers to supoort their home team. Tailevu coach Samisoni Baikeitoga saluted the young brigade of Tailevu for playing their hearts out.

“Its always hard for a team to win against Naitasiri and the players took Naitasiri to the wire with a close points margin.

“This boys are brought up from the villages along Tailevu and did not come through High Performance Unit (HPU). “They played to the last 80 minutes. “I told the players to believe in themselves and the results will come.”

Tailevu will host Nadi at Ratu Cakobau park in the next round while Naitasiri will play against Rewa.

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