June 26, 2018
The inaugural Ucunipotu 7s which will be held at Subrail Park in Labasa in October was today officially launched in Suva.
With the theme “Combating climate change through rugby”- the tournament is organized to raise funds to rebuild the Vunikodi Village Church which was completely destroyed by Cyclone Amy in 2013.
The organisers are also planning to revive the tikina (Udu) club and empower women through the Soqosoqo Vakamarama (women’s) club.
Tournament Chairman Oveti Laladidi said they will cater for only 32 Men’s teams and the first 10 teams to register with full registration of $500 will be provided reasonable accommodation.
“The Northern Division has produced many 7s stars and through this tournament we hope to unleash more talents and give them the opportunity to shine both on the local and international stage.”
“We have produced stars like Seru Rabeni, Rupeni Caucau, William Ryder, Savenaca Rawaca, Jerry Tuwai, Semi Radradra and Alosio Naduva and a tournament of our own will surely help the coaches to identify more talents.”
“The Fiji 7s team and Coach Gareth Baber will also be invited to be part of the tournament. This could be a good buildup for them before the Dubai 7s.”
“We want to greatly thank Mr. Mobile for coming on board as the major sponsors of the tournament and accommodating the major prize money,” he added.
The organisers decided to name the tournament Ucunipotu 7s to raise more awareness about Ucunipotu- a reef system that is the third longest in the world and is more commonly known as the Bai ni Vualiku.
Ucunipotu is the portion of the Great Sea Reef, Cakaulevu, on the Northern most end, which surrounds Udu Point.
The tournament will be played on October 12 and 13 and the winner of the Cup will walk away $5000 richer and the runner-up will get $2000.
Registration for teams closes on September 14.
By Reginald Chandar