Gonetoga Rugby Team from Fiji arrives in Sydney for Rugby Sevens Tournament

Fijian rugby team arrives in Sydney. The 15 member strong Gonetoga rugby squad is all set to compete in the Rugby Sevens Tournament at the Fiji Day Sydney festival, against other pacific contenders. The team members are from the Rewa province which includes the capital city Suva, they are the first ever team from Rewa to participate in this tournament. The tournament will be held in Parramatta this weekend.
Being a part of the Fiji Day Sydney festival, last year the event drew in about 20,000 people, it is recognized as a major pacific community event.
Altogether 24 teams from Pacific Nations and Fijian Provinces are going to participate in this tournament.
Unaisi Karan, Team manager of the Gonetoga squad has said that the players are from simple backgrounds.
She said that the team is from the village. There are some members of the team who have no employment, while some members sell fish or coconuts to earn a living, she further added that for some players, it was their first time flying on a plane. She also considers that playing in a big stadium will be an eye opener for the team.
IIikena Karikaritu, captain of the Gonetoga team has said that many team members had to sacrifice their work to be able to finance their trip. He further added that the rest of the team members had to be provided jobs by them. Some go out to search for coconuts, that they’d sell to make money, while some go out to the sea to catch fish. They put the money together and sell Lovo, the national drink for $50.
The fly half said that the team has refrained voluntarily from taking Alcohol in any form and smoking. It has made them somewhat of a role model in their province. Vuate Godro Sukulu, a fellow team member, said that the elders were very proud of them and also the village people were very much supportive of their endeavour.

Andrew Sheridan retires from rugby due to a damaged neck

Andrew Sheridan has to retire from rugby with immediate effect on medical grounds, at the age of 34, after doctors advised that his damaged neck can no longer take the strain.
The man who has been respected and feared to be England’s scrum destroyer-in-chief received the grim news in the last fortnight. He has won 40 caps Test for his country and two for Lions.
Andrew consulted a specialist to learn whether there was any hope that he might be able to carry on playing rugby but he was advised not to do so.
Sheridan still has one season remaining on his contract with French side Toulon, but in the summer the club got the idea of losing him and their worst nightmare has just been materialized.
Andrew Sheridian himself was also considering the possibility of looking for another club, before being given the medical orders to call time on his career.
He played his last game for Toulon in February, when he had to come off during a home Top 14 match against Biarritz at Stade Felix Mayol. Just afterwards he had to operate his neck, but it didn’t serve as a miracle cure. He had suffered an injury in the same area last November and it was apparent that he could no longer withstand the persistent problems.
An official announcement arrived on Tuesday morning from Sheridan’s management company, James Grant, confirming that he has retired in order to pursue a career in the wine trade. Since moving to France in 2012, he has been studying in order to turn a hobby into a full-time venture, and after completing qualifications he plans to become a wine buyer.
Andrew Sheridan went out on a high at club level. In 2013, he was a stalwart of the multi-national Toulon team who won the Heineken Cup, beating French rivals Clermont Auvergne in the final in Dublin.