Fiji national rugby league team

Last updated
Fiji
Fiji National Rugby league team.png
Team information
NicknameFiji Bati
Governing body Fiji National Rugby League
Region Asia-Pacific
Head coach Brandon Costin [1]
Captain Korbin Sims
Most caps Akuila Uate (18)
Top try-scorer Akuila Uate (14)
Top point-scorer Wes Naiqama (132)
Home stadium National Stadium
RLIF ranking 5th
Uniforms
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First colours
Team results
First international
Flag of Samoa.svg Western Samoa 32–18 Fiji  Flag of Fiji.svg
(Apia, Samoa; 1992)
Biggest win
Flag of Fiji.svg  Fiji 72–6 Wales  Flag of Wales (1959-present).svg
(Townsville, Australia; 5 November 2017)
Biggest defeat
Flag of Australia (converted).svg  Australia 84–14 Fiji  Flag of Fiji.svg
(Marathon Stadium, Newcastle; 12 July 1994)
World Cup
Appearances5 (first time in 1995 )
Best resultSemi-finals, 2008, 2013, 2017

The Fiji national rugby league team, nicknamed the Bati (pronounced [mˈbatʃi] ), has been participating in international rugby league football since 1992. The team is controlled by the governing body for rugby league in Fiji, Fiji National Rugby League (FNRL), which is currently a member of the Asia-Pacific Rugby League Confederation (APRLC). Fiji have thrice reached the semi-finals of the Rugby League World Cup, in 2008, 2013 and 2017, and are currently ranked 5th in the Rugby League International Federation's World Rankings.

Contents

History

1990s

The game was introduced to Fiji only in 1992 but despite this there has been a long history of Fijian players making their mark in rugby league, most notably back in the 1960s when great players such as Joe Levula and Laitia Ravouvou joined Rochdale Hornets and became household names in the English competition.

Interest and participation in rugby league snowballed throughout Fiji, and as well as continued success in the World Sevens, the Batis began playing full 13-aside games against international teams. By 1994, Fiji had hammered the Great Britain Amateur tourists (40-8) and, captained by mighty front-rower James Pickering, beat France (20-12).

They had also produced their first rugby league superstar after winger Noa Nadruku joined Canberra Raiders and in 1993 became the top try-scorer in the Australian competition.

Fiji took part in their first World Cup in 1995 where, just as the 2000 World Cup, they had the misfortune to be placed in the same group as both England and Australia. But the Batis made a massive impression in their opening World Cup game in which they ran riot against South Africa, 52-6, and had the crowd on their feet at Keighley.

During the Super League war, Fiji, like most countries other countries, aligned itself with Super League. In search of international competition, the Australian Rugby League played a match against a "National Rugby League of Fiji" team in 1996. This match has been granted Test status by the Australian Rugby League, but not by the Rugby League International Federation.

2000s

Coached by Don Furner, Sr. and captained by Lote Tuqiri, Fiji competed in the 2000 World Cup but did not progress past the tournament's group stage.

The Fiji Bati qualified for the 2008 Rugby League World Cup held in Australia after finishing second in Pacific qualifying behind Tonga. Fiji's qualification campaign started with a thrilling 30-28 loss to Samoa before reversing the scoreline a few days later with a 30-28 win over the Tongans. Fiji won their final qualifying game against Cook Islands 40-4. Having qualified the Vodafone Fiji Bati team started their Rugby League World Cup 2008 campaign with 42-6 win over France followed by a 2-point defeat to Scotland, however they topped their group with a superior points difference. Beating Ireland in their quarter final they came within one match of the World Cup final, but were defeated by Australia, ending the tournament in 4th place.

2010s

Fiji automatically qualified for the 2013 Rugby League World Cup after participating in the 2008 tournament. They took on Australia, England and Ireland in the pool stage. In their first match they took on 'the Wolfhounds'. They played at the famous Spotland Stadium, in Rochdale, where Fiji have an historic affiliation with. The Fijians convincingly won by a score of 32-14. As expected Fiji lost to both Australia and England, although they surprised many, as they only conceded 34 points against the teams in each game and they led 2-0 against Australia, and were within a few minutes of taking a half-time lead against England. Fiji would take on 'fierce Pacific rivals' Samoa in the quarter final. They won the, passionate pacific, fixture and they would celebrate with a 22-4 victory. They celebrated even more, as it meant Fiji reached their second consecutive World Cup semi-final. They took on Australia again, but this game was nothing like the group stage fixture. Fiji's errors conceded them 62 points against a classy Australian side. This defeat ended and equalled their best World Cup campaign in their history.

In May 2014, Fiji took on Samoa in the 2014 Pacific Rugby League Test at Penrith Stadium. The International was created as a qualifier for the final 2014 Four Nations spot. It was also a chance for the Four Nations team (winner of this international) to warm-up before the event kicked off later in the year. Fiji failed to qualify with their fierce pacific rivals getting the better of them by 32-16.

In May 2015, Fiji took on Papua New Guinea in the 2015 Melanesian Cup test at Cbus Super Stadium. Fiji won the match and the inaugural Melanesian Cup title. [2] Fiji never looked like losing the match after an easy first half performance, leading 18-0 at the break. They went on to win the test match by 22-10.

In May 2016, Fiji took on Papua New Guinea in the 2016 Melanesian Cup test at Pirtek Stadium. Fiji had a similar situation in this year's Melanesian Cup with a half-time score of 16-8 but this time around they conceded too many second half points allowing the Kumuls to make a shock comeback and win the match 24-22.

2020s

Fiji automatically qualified for the 2021 Rugby League World Cup having reached the semi finals of the previous Rugby League World Cup. The 2021 tournament will take place in England.

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Primary
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1992–1995
Kit left arm Fiji1995RLWC.png
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1995 World Cup
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2008 World Cup

Players

For all past and present players who have appeared for the national team, see Fiji national rugby league team players.

Current squad

17 man squad vs PNG Kumuls for the 2019 Pacific Test. [3]

Pos.PlayerClub
Fullback Sitiveni Moceidreke Sunshine Coast Colours.svg Sunshine Coast Falcons
Wing Maika Sivo Parramatta colours.svg Parramatta Eels
Centre Taane Milne New Zealand colours.svg New Zealand Warriors
Centre Brayden Wiliame Catalanscolours.svg Catalan Dragons
Wing Suliasi Vunivalu Melbourne colours.svg Melbourne Storm
Five-eighth Kevin Naiqama Saintscolours.svg St Helens
Halfback Brandon Wakeham Canterbury colours.svg Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs
Prop Kane Evans Parramatta colours.svg Parramatta Eels
Hooker Joe Lovodua St. George colours.svg St George Illawarra Dragons
Prop Tui Kamikamica Melbourne colours.svg Melbourne Storm
Second-row Viliame Kikau Penrith Panthers square flag icon with 2017 colours.svg Penrith Panthers
Second-row Ben Nakubuwai Redscolours.svg Salford Red Devils
Lock D'Rhys Miller Western Suburbs colours.svg Wentworthville Magpies
Second-row Lamar Manuel-Liolevave Western Suburbs colours.svg Tweed Heads Seagulls
Halfback Joseph Ratuvakacereivalu Western Suburbs colours.svg Western Suburbs Magpies
Second-row King Vuniyayawa New Zealand colours.svg New Zealand Warriors
Halfback Penioni Tagituimua Penrith Panthers square flag icon with 2017 colours.svg Nadera Panthers

Tournament history

Rugby League World Cup

World Cup record
YearRoundPositionGPWLD
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg 1995 Group Stage6/103120
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg Four Provinces Flag.svg Flag of France.svg 2000 Group Stage12/163120
Flag of Australia (converted).svg 2008 Semi-finals4/104220
Flag of England.svg Flag of Wales (1959-present).svg 2013 Semi-finals4/145230
Flag of Australia (converted).svg Flag of New Zealand.svg Flag of Papua New Guinea.svg 2017 Semi-finals4/145410
Flag of England.svg 2021 0/00000
Total0 Titles4/132010100

Four Nations

Four Nations record
YearRoundPositionGPWLD
Flag of England.svg Flag of France.svg 2009 Not Invited
Flag of Australia (converted).svg Flag of New Zealand.svg 2010 Failed to Qualify
Flag of England.svg Flag of Wales (1959-present).svg 2011 Not Invited
Flag of Australia (converted).svg Flag of New Zealand.svg 2014 Failed to Qualify
Flag of England.svg Flag of Scotland.svg 2016 Not Invited
Total0 Titles0/50030

Pacific Cup

Pacific Cup record
YearRoundPositionGPWLD
Flag of New Zealand.svg 1992 Group Stage9/104130
Flag of Fiji.svg 1994 Second Place2/106420
Flag of New Zealand.svg 1997 Group Stage5/63021
Flag of New Zealand.svg 2004 Group Stage4/62110
Flag of New Zealand.svg 2006 Second Place2/63210
Flag of Papua New Guinea.svg 2009 Semi-finals3/52110
Total0 Titles6/12209101

Other competitions

Fiji have also participated in:

International Results

The following table underneath shows Fiji's all-time rugby league results record. They have been participating in International fixtures since 1992. [4]

Tonga have played 83 internationals with the most recent being played on 2 November 2019 against Australia.

International Results
CountryMatchesWonDrawnLostWin %ForAgaDiff
Flag of American Samoa.svg  American Samoa 1100100%1614+2
Flag of Australia (converted).svg  Australia 6016%16336–320
Australian Aboriginal Flag.svg Australian Aboriginies 1100100%2120+1
Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg  Canada 1100100%2612+14
Flag of the Cook Islands.svg  Cook Islands 1161454.55%323181+142
Flag of England.svg  England 3003%22146–124
Flag of England.svg England Knights 1100100%448+36
Flag of France.svg  France 2200100%6218+44
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg  Great Britain 1001%472–68
Four Provinces Flag.svg  Ireland 2200100%6228+34
Flag of Italy.svg  Italy 1100100%3810+28
Flag of Lebanon.svg  Lebanon 320166.67%10276+26
Tino Rangatiratanga Maori sovereignty movement flag.svg  Māori 1001%1232–20
Flag of New Zealand.svg  New Zealand 1100100%42+2
Flag of New Zealand.svg New Zealand XIII 1100100%3416+18
Flag of Niue.svg  Niue 210150%3438–4
Flag of Papua New Guinea.svg  Papua New Guinea 720528.57%102175–73
Flag of Russia.svg Russia 1100100%3812+26
Flag of Samoa.svg Samoa 1280466.67%274184+90
Flag of Scotland.svg  Scotland 1001%1618–2
Flag of South Africa.svg  South Africa 1100100%526+46
Flag of Tonga.svg  Tonga 1251641.67%215240–25
Flag of the United States.svg  United States 1100100%5812+46
Flag of Wales (1959-present).svg  Wales 1100100%726+66
Total794123651.9%17431784–41
Below are the previous 5 matches of the national team."

2019 Oceania Cup – Pool B
9 November 2019
17:20 NZDT (UTC+13)
Fiji  Flag of Fiji.svg22 – 20Flag of Papua New Guinea.svg  Papua New Guinea
Try: Kamikamica, Kikau, Nakubuwai, Wiliame
Goal: Wakeham (3/4)
Try: Boas, Gebbie, Martin
Goal: Martin (4/4)
Rugby League Park, Christchurch [5]
Attendance: 8,875
Referee: Chris Kendall (England)

Notes:

  • Daniel Russell (Papua New Guinea) made his Test debut, while Alex Johnston made his debut for Papua New Guinea having previously represented Australia.

2019 Oceania Cup – Pool B
2 November 2019
14:20 NZDT (UTC+13)
Samoa  Flag of Samoa.svg18 – 44Flag of Fiji.svg  Fiji
Try: Taufua (2), Lafai, Mulitalo
Goal: Lafai (1/4)
Report Try: Kikau (2), Miller, Lovodua, Lumelume, Naiqama, Ratuvakacereivalu, Wiliame
Goal: Wakeham (5/6), Moceidreke (1/2)
Eden Park, Auckland [5]
Attendance: 25,257
Referee: Grant Atkins (Australia)

Notes:


22 June 2019
17:40 AEST (UTC+10)
Fiji  Flag of Fiji.svg58 – 14Flag of Lebanon.svg  Lebanon
Try: Bukuya (2), Sivo (2), Vunivalu (2), Lovodua, Kamikamica, Kikau, Wakeham
Goal: Wakeham (8/9), Roqica (1/1)
Try: Miski (2), Lichaa
Goal: Maarbani (1/2), Robinson (0/1)
Leichhardt Oval, Sydney
Attendance: 8,408
Referee: Matt Cecchin (Australia) [6]

Melanesian Cup

23 June 2018
16:00 AEST (UTC+10)
Papua New Guinea  Flag of Papua New Guinea.svg26 – 14Flag of Fiji.svg  Fiji
Try: Rau (2), Olam, Page
Goal: Martin (5/5)
Report Try: Montoya, Phillips, Vunivalu
Goal: Moceidreke (1/2), Raiwalui (0/1)
Campbelltown Stadium, Sydney [7]
Attendance: 17,802
Referee: Matt Cecchin (Australia)

Australia vs Fiji

24 November 2017
19:00 AEDT (UTC+10)
Australia  Flag of Australia (converted).svg54 6Flag of Fiji.svg  Fiji
Tries:
Holmes (18', 24', 42', 51', 65', 75') 6
Gagai (31', 69') 2
Slater (14', 48') 2
Goals:
Smith 7/10
(15', 19', 33', 43', 49', 53', 67')
1st: 22 2
2nd: 32 4
Report
Tries:
1 (59') Vunivalu
Goals:
1/2 Koroisau
(7' pen)
Brisbane Stadium, Brisbane
Attendance: 22,073
Referee: Gerard Sutton (Australia)
Man of the Match: Cameron Smith (Australia)
Team lists:
FB1 Billy Slater
WG2 Dane Gagai
CE3 Will Chambers
CE4 Josh Dugan
WG5 Valentine Holmes
FE6 Michael Morgan
HB7 Cooper Cronk
PR8 Aaron Woods
HK9 Cameron Smith (c)
PR10 David Klemmer
SR11 Boyd Cordner
SR12 Matt Gillett
LK13 Josh McGuire
Substitutes:
IC14 Wade Graham
IC15 Jordan McLean
IC16 Reagan Campbell-Gillard
IC17 Tyson Frizell
Coach:
Flag of Australia (converted).svg Mal Meninga
FB1 Kevin Naiqama (c)
WG2 Suliasi Vunivalu
CE3 Taane Milne
CE4 Akuila Uate
WG5 Marcelo Montoya
FE6 Jarryd Hayne
HB7 Henry Raiwalui
PR8 Ashton Sims
HK9 Apisai Koroisau
PR10 Eloni Vunakece
SR11 Viliame Kikau
SR12 Brayden Wiliame
LK13 Tui Kamikamica
Substitutes:
IC14 Joe Lovodua
IC15 Jacob Saifiti
IC16 Junior Roqica
IC17 Ben Nakubuwai
Coach:
Flag of Australia (converted).svg Michael Potter

See also

Related Research Articles

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References

  1. https://www.fbcnews.com.fj/sports/rugby-league/brandon-costin-is-the-new-fiji-bati-coach/
  2. "Fiji vs. PNG 2015 Melanesian Cup". Nrl.com. Retrieved 2 May 2015.
  3. https://www.nrl.com/news/2019/11/09/fiji-edge-png-in-razzle-dazzle-thriller-in-christchurch/
  4. "Fiji Head to Head". rugbyleagueproject. Retrieved 6 May 2020.
  5. 1 2
  6. 1 2 3 "Match officials for RLWC2021 Qualifier and RLIF Oceania Cup fixtures". RLIF. 19 June 2019. Retrieved 19 June 2019.
  7. "2018 Pacific Test Invitational schedule finalised". NRL.com. 15 May 2018. Retrieved 16 May 2018.