When Jasa Weds Vani

KOROTOGO CEL­E­BRATES HERO’S BIG DAY

mailife - - Front Page - By MELA TUILEVUKA Pho­tos by FEROZ KHALIL & MELA TUILEVUKA

When Vani Grace Volavola mar­ried sport­ing hero and 7s Olympian Jasa Vere­malua in Koro­toga Vil­lage church last week, it was the cul­mi­na­tion of a five year courtship. “Tau­mada au vakavinav­inakataka vua na Kalou na gau­nisala bal­avu keirau lako cu­ruma mai kei Vani, sa mai vakavo­tukana na siga nikua (Firstly I would like to thank God for see­ing Vani and I through our jour­ney of court­ing and dat­ing… the end re­sult is what we see here to­day – our wed­ding),” Jasa said. And he was look­ing for­ward to the birth of their first child within the next few days. Jasa had turned down lu­cra­tive over­seas con­tracts so he could con­tinue wear­ing the white jumper of Fiji, and re­vealed that his love for Vani was an­other of the rea­sons he chose to re­main here at home. “I know play­ers want to go abroad for bet­ter of­fers but for me and Vani this is what we both wanted, to get mar­ried and see the birth of our first child,” he said. “I know there will be more op­por­tu­ni­ties and of­fers out there for me but first things first and for me now, my fam­ily comes first.” Not one to mince his words, Jasa said he had asked his coach and man­ager for time off – which meant his ab­sence in the Las Ve­gas 7s.

“The birth of my first child is more im­por­tant to me now than any­thing – I wouldn’t miss it for the world.” “My ab­sence in the Las Ve­gas 7s will also give other play­ers in the team a chance to prove them­selves and their worth,” he added. “I will try and se­cure my place again in the team for the Hong Kong and Sin­ga­pore leg of the se­ries.” At 10am the bride ar­rived at the vil­lage and was ac­corded the ‘i vaka­sobu’ – a tra­di­tional Fi­jian wel­come in which one of Jasa’s sis­ters, ac­com­pa­nied by his un­cles, waited for the bride. She was then es­corted to a house al­lo­cated to her and her fam­ily to pre­pare for the wed­ding. Vani is from Yadua vil­lage in Cuvu, Nadroga. She said she and Jasa were blessed to have their fam­i­lies cel­e­brate their union. “I am so over­whelmed with what our fam­i­lies pre­pared. Some of them have gone all out for us and we are so grate­ful,” she said. Vani said she felt lucky to have met Jasa. “I am glad that Jasa has cho­sen to put us – me and see­ing our first born – first in­stead of his ca­reer and I know he will be a good fa­ther and a good fam­ily man.” Vani added she un­der­stands that Jasa loves his rugby and will sup­port him in what­ever way she can. “Af­ter the birth, I think Jasa will go back to his rugby boots and I am his big­gest fan so I will sup­port him all the way.”

Jasa and his wife Vani light­ing their union can­dle

Jasa and his wife Vani in church.

Jasa and Vani cut their wed­ding cake

Jasa and Vani en­joy­ing their hon­ey­moon at Toko­riki Re­sort

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