Dad’s first journey from Fiji makes Maika’s day
Sydney: For every try or eye-catching fend Maika Sivo has delivered in 2019, a closeknit contingent of family has erupted in the small Fijian village of Momi.
The script for the NRL’s latest barnstorming winger from the South Pacific island nation couldn’t have gone any better for the Sivo family with their recent reunion providing a heart-warming moment for the rugby league faithful.
As part of their ongoing brand partnership, Victoria Bitter and National Rugby League joined forces to surprise Maika at training the day before the Eels played the Knights at Bankwest Stadium in round 21.
It was the first time Joeli had left his homeland - he boarded a plane bound for Sydney to see Maika play rugby league, a sport he only started playing four years ago.
Sivo has had a year to remember after bursting onto the scene in the opening round of the NRL season to be ranked second on the leading try-scorers list with 16.
“My son Maika built our house for us,” Joeli says, standing outside his house in Momi. “He sends money every fortnight.” Maika explains the motive to support his family financially from afar, while he lives with his uncle Mamua in south-west Sydney.
“My dad, he’s worked hard all his life,” Sivo says.
“I just wanted to pay him back for all his sacrifices. He’s still working hard. I think about him all the time. He and mum are proud of me. My dad watches every game I play. Him, mum and the whole family never miss the game [via satellite].