Rugby con­tract for Fi­jiana 2 in France

Fiji Sun - - Front Page - ANASILINI RATUVA Edited by Osea Bola

When God opens a door of op­por­tu­ni­ties, no man can close it, says Fi­jiana ‘Wo­man Moun­tain’ Litia Naiqato. Naiqato and her Fi­jiana team­mate Luisa Tisolo have se­cured six mon­th­con­tracts with Stade Ren­nais Rugby Club in France. They be­come the first sevens rugby play­ers to se­cure rugby con­tracts and Naiqato was on cloud nine as she re­calls the strug­gles she went through.. She hails from Dakuinuku, Sawakasa in Tailevu but was brought up in a neigh­bour­ing set­tle­ment in Na­mau just 5km away from Ratu Ka­davulevu School. “I went through a lot dur­ing my child­hood days, we went through a lot of strug­gles but that did not de­ter me from achiev­ing my goal. “I want to thank God for giv­ing me this op­por­tu­nity and ma­te­ri­al­is­ing my dream. I know I’ve worked so hard for this and be­ing one of the first Fi­jian women to se­cure a over­seas con­tract is a priv­i­lege,” Naiqato said.

Nick­named ‘Arnold’ she is also dubbed as ‘wo­man moun­tain’ by her Fi­jiana team­mates dur­ing the Rio Olympics last month. She at­tended Lodoni Pri­mary School be­fore she moved to Tailevu North Col­lege to pur­sue her sec­ondary school stud­ies. She played in high school and was also part of the Fi­jian Un­der-20 foot­ball side to the Ocea­nia play­off in Samoa in 2006. She be­gan her rugby ca­reer in 2009 and made her first in­ter­na­tional de­but in 2012 in the Women’s World Rugby 7s Asian qual­i­fiers in Pune, In­dia.

“I want to ded­i­cate this achieve­ment to my fam­ily in the vil­lage and in Suva and thank Fiji Rugby for this op­por­tu­nity.” Naiqato and Tisolo de­part for France to­mor­row.

Photo: Vilimoni Vaganalau

Team Fiji women’s sevens rover Litia Naiqato with aunt, Meredani Du­vaga niece, Joana Du­vaga in New­ton yes­ter­day

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