Chief executive of the Fiji Rugby Union, Timoci Tavanavanua, has expressed his extreme gratitude to the Government for the additional funds that have been made available to help the FMF Flying Fijians’ campaign at the Rugby World Cup.
“I think I speak for the whole rugby fraternity in Fiji, not just the FRU, when I say a big vinaka vakalevu to the Fiji Government,” Mr Tavanavanua said.
“We fully appreciate the difficult economic times that the country is in at the moment, so this additional funding of $111,000 is very much appreciated.”
The new funding comes on top of the original amount of $400,000 allocated in the National Budget earlier this year.
“The bulk of this assistance from Government will go directly towards compensating the players,” Mr Tavanavanua said.
“It’s a very expensive campaign, amounting to well over $2million when you include our build-up games in the Pacific Nations Cup.” “We’ve got great support from title sponsors FMF, as well as companies like KooGa, Tappoo, Air Pacific, Asco Motors, United Apparel, and Dahia Shoes.” “However, even with all this support and that from the Government, we will likely have to go into debt to fund this campaign.” The chief executive also pointed out that more TV viewers will watch the FMF Flying Fijians at the 2007 Rugby World Cup than at any other time. “Hundreds of millions of people around the world will be tuned in to see the live broadcasts of Fiji at the World Cup,” he said.
“This is a superb opportunity to promote our islands and our people on the world stage.
“It’s therefore essential that the Fiji players and officials can get the best preparation possible to allow them to do our country proud.”
Caption: Interim Sports Minister Lekh Ram Vayeshnoi shakes hands with FRU CEO Timoci Tavanavanua