Letter to the Editor | Monday, October 2, 2023

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Rugby Union – Rugby World Cup 2023 – Pool D – Fiji v Georgia – Matmut Atlantique, Bordeaux, France – September 30, 2023 Georgia players look dejected after the match REUTERS/Sarah Meyssonnier

A truly hard-fought match

A GUTSY, determined, mobile and physical Georgian side really took the FIJI Water Flying Fijians to the wire.

Trailing 0 – 9 at the break, Fiji was truly tested for all of 50 minutes.

Fiji and almost all Fijians in all corners of the world smile brilliantly this Sunday morning, October 01, 2023.

The Flying Fijians came out victorious 17-12.

A come-from-behind win.

We were totally gutted.

A truly hard fought match.

We are proud of your total commitment.

Thank you lord.

Prayers answered, again.

Vina va levu na leda saravou.

Sa lia na qaqa vina qa lia na waqe kaikai.

RONNIE CHANG, Martintar, Nadi

A win is a win

WE must be honest with ourselves and acknowledge that, for a brief moment, we considered the possibility that Georgia might defeat us.

During the first half, Georgia completely controlled the game, both in terms of gameplay and the scoreboard.

However, it’s commendable that the Flying Fijians maintained their composure and made a strong comeback in the second half.

Their two tries allowed us to take the lead.

Although there was a tense moment at full time, our team remained composed, ultimately securing a victory.

While there are still areas that require improvement, a win is a win.

Congratulations to the boys; once again, you’ve made us proud.

SANJEET PRASAD, Mani Rd, Bulileka, Labasa

Made us proud

ONCE again our warriors made us proud as expected.

Well done boys for playing wonders and keeping this nation united with your skills.

Fools will never understand what rugby means to Fijians.

You need to have a lion’s heart not a Mickey Mouse brain.

Vinaka boys, keep it going.

Fiji all the way.

KIRTI PATEL, Mohan Singh Pl, Lautoka

Georgia’s onslaught

THE Fiji Water Flying Fijians fought back to win against Georgia and close in on a quarter-final place after coming back from 0-9 half-time deficit.

The first-half performance was an eyesore as we played into the hands of The Lelos who came out firing from the blocks.

Knock-ons, miscommunication, missed tackles, rushed play and lack of communication characterised our performance in the first 40 minutes, but the boys got their acts together in the second spell to put one leg into the RWC quarters after 16 long years.

Tries from courageous captain Waisea Nayacalevu and speed merchant Vinaya Habosi, which were both converted by Frank Lomani, earned the Flying Fijians their second win of the tournament.

However, Fiji was unable to claim a bonus point which leaves the door slightly ajar for Australia to reach the knock-out stages themselves.

In another tale, for the first time in six years, the Flying Fijians failed to score a point in the first half of a Test match.

Georgia played with a lot of pride and passion and the Lelos made a late counterattack, but were unable to covert it into points.

The Flying Fijians have work ahead of them as they face Portugal and most likely England in the quarters.

Our discipline was questioned as Semi Radradra and Josua Tuisova were sent to the sinbin.

Anyways, let’s take the win and work on our weak areas and flaws.


Wake up call

PHEW, a 14th ranked Georgia almost sent Fiji fans into a frenzy.

They analytically read all facets of Fiji’s dim-witted game plan and capitalised on every opportunity at their disposal.

The Flying Fijians seriously need to focus and elevate their lacklustre performance if they are to progress to the elimination phase, or as usual, we can kiss the world cup goodbye after our next and final pool match.

We can be celebrating our pulsating win over the Wallabies incessantly, and yet be tormented and handed a reality check on the rugby paddock by the likes of Georgia.

Toso Viti!


State of Fiji soccer

THE Sunday Times editorial “Where are we headed?” (Oct 1 FT) raises pertinent issues pertaining to soccer in the country.

It speaks for the die-hard soccer lovers when it points out that it is a “sad reflection of the sport” when we look at the state soccer has fallen to.

Who is responsible for the decline?

Let’s not beat around the bush about it.

We must put the blame where it rightfully belongs — with the officials running soccer in the country.

They are heading soccer in the wrong direction!

RAJEND NAIDU, Sydney, NSW, Australia

DPP, FICAC appointments

THERE is no conflict of interest in the appointment of one person as the acting DPP and the same person as the Acting Commissioner of FICAC as stated by our god-fearing A-G.

So that must be the case then!

You see, the A-G only appoints people he can work with, if people did not already know.

We must listen to people appointed by God.

I have said this many times before, the people of Fiji are truly blessed.

JAN NISSAR, Sydney, NSW, Australia

Nadi ends drought

HEARTBREAK for me and many other Nadroga fans as the Stallions lost the Inkk Farebrother Sullivan Trophy to Nadi at Lawaqa Park.

Ironically Jack Volavola, who kicked the winning penalty last year that enabled Nadroga to bring the prestigious trophy from King Charles Park, was the victim as his departure to the sinbin crippled the Nadroga defence.

Volavola also missed two kickable penalties.

I commend Nadi coach Howard Politini and his brigade, especially Livai Natave, Maikeli Sivo, Samuela Saqiqa, Jolame Luvevou, my man of the match Ilisoni Galala, Navitalai Tuilawa, Peni Naruma and Anasa Raqili for the wonderful victory that enabled the visitors to break a 40-year-old losing jinx at Lawaqa Park in the Farebrother challenge match.

Nadi last beat Nadroga at Lawaqa Park in 1983.

The Stallions have work ahead of them as they travel to the Capital to face Suva whom they drew 15-all in the third challenge match.

A loss would mean an empty trophy cabinet for Etonia Naba and his troops.

However, the Stallions have unveiled future stars in Sanaila Nahuto, Tevita Boseiwaqa, Aporosa Matakasa, Jonacani Vucago, Aminiasi Natoga, Aisake Atani, and Ilikimi Torosi, who has impressed many.

I’d love to see Torosi and Galala in the Swire Shipping Fijian Drua.

Hard luck Nadroga!

The two-point loss is painful, but let’s regroup for the Skipper Cup semis.


Important birthdays

ON October 2 two renowned statesmen in Indian history were born.

They were both extremely effective political figures.

Mahatma Gandhi, a legendary freedom fighter in India’s struggle for independence, was one of them.

He used peaceful civil disobedience to help the country overcome British colonial rule.

His commitment to social justice, nonviolence, and the truth influenced movements across the world.

Gandhi’s legacy lives on as a representation of nonviolent protest and moral leadership.

The latter’s birthday and legacy are rarely recognised, and we were never even taught about them in secondary school history classes.

Lal Bahadur Shastri, born on October 2, 1904, in India, was a revered statesman and the second Prime Minister of India.

The Green Revolution, which increased agricultural output, is a legacy of his administration.

Shastri’s management of the 1965 Indo-Pak War demonstrated his commitment and resolve.

His catchphrase, “Jai Jawaan, Jai Kisaan” (hail the soldier, hail the farmer), is still a living example of his unwavering commitment to nationalism and simplicity.

Therefore, October 2 is Shastri Jayanti as well as Gandhi Jayanti.


Aboriginal referendum

RECENTLY I visited my children in Hobart, Tasmania ,Australia.

While on Bruni Island, I visited 900 Steps Lookout in memory of Truganini (Lallah Rookh c.1812- 8May 1876), the last surviving Aboriginal woman speaking native Aboriginal language.

Before her death, Truganini had pleaded with authorities to give her a decent burial.

But two years later, Truganini’s body was exhumed and placed in a museum.

On October 14, 2023 Australians will vote on a referendum on changing its constitution to recognise the First Peoples of Australia by establishing a body called The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice.

Voters will be asked to vote on ‘Yes or No’ on a single question.

I request Jan Nissar and Rajend Nadiu (as activists) to campaign for ‘Yes’ vote.

Presently it appears that a ‘No’ vote is likely.

By the way Tasmania is a beautiful island state of Australia to visit.


Solutions and faith

I HAVE one question after reading John Kamea’s illuminating article “Finding solutions in our faith” (ST 1/10 ).

Can a person be a decent human being without recourse to religion?

I mean look at all the wars and atrocities committed throughout human history and to the present day by people who profess to be deeply religious.

RAJEND NAIDU, Sydney, NSW, Australia

New mill plan

PLANS are afoot to construct a new sugar mill in Rakiraki as revealed by the Sugar Minister.

Great initiative indeed as this was a project that was long-delayed.

If memory serves me right, a former politician and businessman, who proudly used to refer to himself as the son of “Ra”, had also publicised a profound interest in acquiring and restoring the existing Penang mill before the 2022 “glitch-riddled” elections.

I wonder why his eagerly anticipated proposal did not come to fruition, much to the dismay of his fellow “Ra-ssians”.


Pothole minister

I THINK the “Minister for Potholes” has got his job all confused.

He is supposed to fix all the potholes not to oversee the increase in the size and number of potholes.

Can someone please tell him, or is everything left to me?

Has anyone seen him lately?

JAN NISSAR, Sydney, NSW, Australia

Special fares

WOULD Fiji Airways care to explain why special fares are only available for travel from USA to Nadi and not the other way around.


Project protest

YOU know democracy has returned in Fiji when residents can protest development work occurring in their area with “proper consultation and environmental assessment” ( ST 1/10 ).

For too long since the 2006 coup the people were denied the right to protest and that explains the mess left behind by the previous two-man FijiFirst government of Bainimarama and Sayed-Khaiyum.

A good responsible government takes cognisance and factors in peoples views on any local development undertaking that is likely to impact on them and the environment.

RAJEND NAIDU, Sydney, NSW, Australia