Fiji national rugby league team

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Fiji
Badge of Fiji team
Nickname The Fiji Bati
Governing body Fiji National Rugby League
Region Asia-Pacific
Head coach Rick Stone
Captain Wes Naiqama
Most caps Wes Naiqama (14)
Home stadium National Stadium
RLIF ranking 5th
Colours
First international
Samoa Western Samoa 32–18 Fiji 
(Apia, Samoa; 1992)
Biggest win
 Cook Islands 6–54 Fiji 
(Suva, Fiji; 1992)
Biggest defeat
 Australia 84–14 Fiji 
(Marathon Stadium, Newcastle; 12 July 1994)
World Cup
Appearances 4 (first time in 1995)
Best result Semi Final 2008, 2013

The Fiji national rugby league team, nicknamed the Bati (pronounced [mˈbatʃi]), represents Fiji in the sport of rugby league football and has been participating in international competition since 1992 f g . Members of the team are selected from the domestic Fijian competition, as well as from competitions in New Zealand and Australia. For the 2000 and 2008 World Cups the Bati were captained by Lote Tuqiri and Wes Naiqama respectively. They have produced players like Petero Civoniceva, Akuila Uate, Lote Tuqiri, Jarryd Hayne, Wes Naiqama, Kevin Naiqama, Eto Nabuli, Semi Radradra, Marika Koroibete and Sisa Waqa.

History[edit]

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.

2008 Rugby League World Cup[edit]

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.

2013 Rugby League World Cup campaign[edit]

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.

2014 Pacific Rugby League Test[edit]

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.

2015 Pacific Rugby League Test[edit]

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.[1] 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.

2015 Squad[edit]

The Fiji national team squad selected for the Melanesian Cup test-match[2] (appearances, and points, apply for after the test-match finished):

Other Nat. Pos. Player Age Caps Pts Club
Australia Fullback Kevin Naiqama (1989-02-04) 4 February 1989 (age 26) 9 4 Wests Tigers colours.svg Wests Tigers
Australia Fullback Tyrone Phillips (1994-01-05) 5 January 1994 (age 21) 1 0 Canterbury colours.svg Canterbury Bulldogs
Fiji Wing Marika Koroibete (1992-07-26) 26 July 1992 (age 22) 7 8 Melbourne colours.svg Melbourne Storm
Fiji Wing Eto Nabuli (1988-08-24) 24 August 1988 (age 26) 2 0 Illawarra colours.svg St. George Illawarra Dragons
Australia Centre Fabian Goodall (1994-12-13) 13 December 1994 (age 20) 2 8 Australian colours.svg Wentworthville Magpies
Australia Centre Brayden Wiliame (1992-12-17) 17 December 1992 (age 22) 1 0 Manly Sea Eagles colours.svg Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles
Australia Centre Daryl Millard (1985-02-20) 20 February 1985 (age 30) 9 4 South Sydney colours.svg South Sydney Rabbitohs
Australia Halfback Ryan Millard (1987-03-13) 13 March 1987 (age 28) 5 0 Brisbane colours.svg Brisbane Norths
Australia Prop Eloni Vunakece (1987-05-27) 27 May 1987 (age 28) 7 4 Australian colours.svg Wyong Roos
Australia Prop Daniel Saifiti (1996-05-01) 1 May 1996 (age 19) 1 0 Newcastle colours.svg Newcastle Knights
Fiji Prop Osea Sadrau (1986-04-24) 24 April 1986 (age 29) 8 0 Fijibaticolours.PNG
Fiji Prop Viliame Kikau (1995-04-05) 5 April 1995 (age 20) 1 0 North Queensland colours.svg North Queensland Cowboys
Australia Hooker Apisai Koroisau (1992-11-07) 7 November 1992 (age 22) 5 6 Panthers colours.svg Penrith Panthers
Fiji Second-row Jayson Bukuya (Captain) (1989-04-21) 21 April 1989 (age 26) 10 12 Cronulla colours.svg Cronulla Sharks
Australia Second-row Jacob Saifiti (1996-05-01) 1 May 1996 (age 19) 1 0 Newcastle colours.svg Newcastle Knights
Australia Lock Korbin Sims (1992-01-02) 2 January 1992 (age 23) 6 8 Newcastle colours.svg Newcastle Knights
Fiji ? Tikio Noke ? 1 0 Fijibaticolours.PNG

Competitions[edit]

Fiji have participated in:

Results[edit]

Official Rankings as of May 2015[3]
Rank Change Team Points
1 Increase  New Zealand 949.00
2 Decrease  Australia 941.00
3 Steady  England 485.00
4  Samoa 320.00
5  France 215.00
6  Fiji 196.00
7  Ireland 154.00
8  Scotland 123.00
9  Wales 122.00
10  United States 118.00
11  Papua New Guinea 113.00
12  Italy 79.00
13 Increase  Canada 49.00
14 Decrease  Serbia 47.00
15 Increase  Tonga 47.00
16 Decrease  Russia 45.00
17 Steady  Cook Islands 31.00
18 Decrease  Belgium 30.00
19  Germany 24.00
20 Increase  Lebanon 24.00
21 Decrease  Norway 22.00
22  Ukraine 21.00
23 Increase  Malta 20.00
24 Decrease  Greece 19.00
25 Steady  Netherlands 15.00
26 Increase  Spain 14.00
27 Decrease  Denmark 13.00
28 Increase  South Africa 12.00
29 Decrease  Jamaica 11.00
30 Decrease  Czech Republic 9.00
31  Sweden 7.00
32 Steady  Hungary 2.00
33 NEW  Niue 2.00
34 Decrease  Latvia 2.00
35 NEW  Philippines 2.00
36 Decrease  Morocco 0.00
  • Fiji def. Samoa 24 - 4 (2 June 2010) [4]
  • Fiji def. Tonga 26 - 16 (31 October 2009)
  • Cook Islands def. Fiji 24 - 22 (24 October 2009) [5]
  • Australia def. Fiji 52 - 0 (16 November 2008)
  • Fiji def. Ireland 30 - 14 (10 November 2008)
  • Fiji def. France 42-6 (1 November 2008)
  • Tonga def. Fiji 14-12 (19 October 2007)
  • Junior Kangaroos def Fiji 15-14 (5 October 2007)
  • Fiji def. Cook Islands 58-12 (26 January 2007)
  • Fiji 40 def. Cook Islands 4 (7 October 2006)
  • Fiji 30 def. Tonga 28 (4 October 2006)
  • Samoa 30 def. Fiji 28 29 September 2006)
  • Tonga def. Fiji 22-4 (2006)
  • Fiji def. Cook Islands 40-18 (2006)
  • Fiji def. Samoa 26-4 (2006)
  • Fiji tied Cook Islands 20-20 (February 2005)
  • Fiji def. Niue 34-24 (23 October 2004)
  • Cook Islands def. Fiji 20-12 (21 October 2004)
  • Tonga def. Fiji 56-6 (17 October 2004)
  • Cook Islands def. Fiji 36-24 (17 August 2004)
  • Fiji def. England "A" 44-8 (11 November 2002)
  • England def. Fiji 66-4 (4 November 2000)
  • Australia def. Fiji 66-8 (1 November 2000)
  • Fiji def. Russia 38-12 (29 October 2000)
  • Fiji def. Tonga 10-6 (3 June 2000)
  • Tonga def. Fiji 23-20 (27 May 2000)
  • New Zealand Māoris def. Fiji 70-0 (29 April 2000)
  • New Zealand Māoris def. Fiji 28-12 (25 April 2000)
  • New Zealand Māoris def. Fiji 44-14 (22 April 2000)
  • Fiji def. Samoa 30-4 (1999)
  • Fiji def. Samoa 22-16 (1999)
  • Samoa def. Fiji 6-1 (1999)
  • Papua New Guinea def. Fiji 16-14 (1998)
  • Papua New Guinea def. Fiji 34-12 (1998)
  • Fiji def. Papua New Guinea 14-10 (1998)
  • Fiji def. Tonga 22-14 (1998)
  • Cook Islands def. Fiji 22-14 (1997)
  • New Zealand Māoris def. Fiji 32-22 (1997)
  • Fiji drew with Tonga 14-14 (1997)
  • Fiji drew with Tonga 22-22 (1997)
  • Fiji def. Cook Islands 14-8 (1996)
  • Great Britain def. Fiji 72-4 (5 October 1996)
  • Australia def. Fiji 66-0 (14 October 1995)
  • England def. Fiji 46-0 (11 October 1995)
  • Fiji def. South Africa 52-6 (8 October 1995)
  • Fiji def. France 20-12 (9 July 1994)
  • Papua New Guinea def. Fiji 35-24 (1993)
  • Fiji def. Cook Islands 54-6 (1992)
  • Tonga def. Fiji 23-20 (1992)
  • Niue def. Fiji 14-10 (1992)
  • Western Samoa def. Fiji 32-18 (1992)

National Rugby League of Fiji[edit]

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 rebel "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.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]