Thomas Vulivuli is looking to win his first title on the domestic scene as a coach this weekend.
The 42-year-old former Fiji international who hails from Savusavu enjoyed an illustrious playing career and won titles both at district and national level with the gold medal win at the 2003 South Pacific Games at the then National Stadium in Suva being one of the major highlights.
Apart from a stint in Australia, he was one of the most wanted attackers in the country and represented his home town Savusavu, Labasa, Rewa, Suva and Navua.
As a coach, he has crossed the first hurdle, which is guiding Labasa to the semifinals of the 2023 Digicel Fiji FACT.
The Savusavu based diver said this season has been challenging for him but he is determined to give his best to ensure the team achieves greatness.
“I came in when Johan left to take up a job with Fiji FA. We did well in the League games and then started preparations for the Fiji FACT.”
“Senior players like Dan (Taniela Waqa), Lino (Iliesa Lino) and Simi (Simione Tamanisau) helped me to prepare this team. This is a team made up of players who put their bodies on the line for the district and their families.”
“This is a special team with a lot of bonding and respect for each other. The comradery and brotherhood is strong and we want to win this tournament for fans, our sponsors and most importantly for our families who have also been making a lot of sacrifices.”
Commenting about their semifinal opponents, Vulivuli said Lautoka has a lot of experienced players and will be a tough team to overcome.
“Definitely it will be a tough encounter. Both teams have their own style of playing football. We will try to disturb their game structure while they will be out to spoil ours.”
“It will all come down to mental preparation as well. Good discipline and focus is vital and we will surely give in our best,” he added.
The Extra Supermarket sponsored Labasa side will face Hyperchem Pharmacy Lautoka in the first semifinal at 2pm.