|Naiqama playing for the Newcastle Knights in 2012|
|Full name||Waisele Ligani Naiqama|
|Nickname||No Dramas, Bula, Coconut|
19 October 1982 |
Sutherland, New South Wales, Australia
|Height||182 cm (6 ft 0 in)|
|Weight||96 kg (15 st 2 lb)|
|Position||Centre, Fullback, Wing|
|2005–2007||St George Illawarra||38||16||48||0||160|
Wes Naiqama (born 19 October 1982) is a Fijian professional rugby league footballer who plays for the Penrith Panthers of the National Rugby League and the Fiji national rugby league team. He primarily plays centre and fullback but can fill in at wing, second-row and five-eighth. He is the older brother of Newcastle Knights player and fellow Fiji international, Kevin Naiqama.
Born in Sutherland, New South Wales, Naiqama played his junior football for the Arncliffe Scots and attended James Cook Boys Technology High School before being signed by the St. George Illawarra Dragons. In 2002, he scored 38 points, 5 tries and 9 goals in a Jersey Flegg game for the Dragons against the North Sydney Bears. In Round 4 of the 2005 NRL season he made his NRL debut for the Dragons against the Canberra Raiders.
In 2007, Naiqama signed a contract with the Newcastle Knights starting in 2008, to be a part of the new Brian Smith era at the Knights. In 2008, Naiqama regularly started in the centres or at fullback. He was also chosen as the replacement goal kicker after Kurt Gidley. He was frequently used as a bench utility player in 2009 and 2010 before gaining his spot back in the starting team in 2011, playing in career best form as a centre or fullback. In Round 16 of the 2011 season, Naiqama got the chance to captain the Newcastle Knights for the first time after captain Kurt Gidley and vice-captain Jarrod Mullen were both injured at the same time. He again was named captain in Round 17. In June 2011, after career best form, Naiqama re-signed with the Knights for 3-years after rejecting a contract with his former club, the St. George Illawarra Dragons. In 2012, after injuries and form loss, Naiqama was dropped to NSW Cup after Round 9 by new Knights coach Wayne Bennett.
In December 2006, Naiqama was arrested but not charged over an alleged assault in Sydney's King Cross.
On 28 February 2007, Naiqama was convicted by a Sydney court for driving a car while his license was disqualified. The court sentenced Naiqama to serve a maximum of eight months periodic detention, with a non-parole period of four months. This was the fourth time Naiqama had been convicted of such an offence.
- "Elusive Naiqama even has his mates guessing". Sydney Morning Herald. 2005-09-14. Retrieved 2008-07-28.
- Keeble, Brett (3 September 2010). "Knights name Kevin Naiqama to make NRL debut". Newcastle Herald (Australia: Fairfax Media). Retrieved 5 October 2010.
- "YOUNG GUN GETS FIRST RUN". Newcastle Knights. 03-09-2010. Retrieved 2010-09-17.
- "Knights Release Wes Naiqama". Newcastle Knights. Retrieved 13 July 2012.
- "Samoa, Tonga and Fiji name squads". BBC. 2008-10-08. Retrieved 2008-10-10.
- "Slater scoops player award". Sky Sports. 3 November 2011. Retrieved 5 November 2011.
- The Sydney Morning Herald, 17 December, 2006. "Dragons' Naiqama lands in trouble again"
- The Sydney Morning Herald, 28 February, 2007. "Weekends off for league: Naiqama gets PD"
- Sydney Morning Herald, 8 June 2007. Story: "Wes Naiqama gets sentence reduced on appeal"