Canada claims the Legends Division of the FANCA Muslim Silver Jubilee tournament with a 4-3 shootout win against Australia at the Prince Charles Park in Nadi, Fiji : FANCA photo

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Rewa Legends new party order

Opinions / Analysis

THE hallmark of Rewa Football Legends party was to raise funds.

Accentuated under a sea of red, former district and national standout and president Onnie Wong’s witty address worked up the attendance.

His correlation of the 1972, Inter District Championship semifinal win against Ba, on a rare 'profane' tactic and technique that brought the house down with huge applause and laughter.

The drill worked out well as Rewa not only won the game but went on to beat Labasa 10-9 in a shootout to claim the championship at the old Buckhurst Park.

Wong made a special mention of Ba’s goalkeeping great late, Semi Nagata.

But, the stigma of the night turned to John Grey and Ex Fiji Football Reps Association, the gist of it was his organization, and if that wasn’t all-ready a show then tada, the colorful Fiji Football Legends induction.

And that underscored the essences of RFL, night of mix, mingle and celebration.

Grey, who is the president, used the opportunity to make good on his body, pushing his ethos on the welfare of former reps.

If Onnie’s admissions ring true, his organization raised sizable funds through public and private donors, better than Grey’s and much of the money handed out to needy district and national reps.


What awes footballing minds is, Grey’s claim that the EFFRA and the FFA are collaborating and cooperating to help raise the standard of football in the country.

How so.

Since the 2020 handshake between the organizations, ex-players have become mute and or gagged, except those that live outside of the country from uttering a word against the rising tide on training and development of the sport, lack-lustre performance, and failed coaches.

And that is the sad reality.


The upside though is former reps induction as legends of the sport, and that being done seemingly at will.

The man who first called out FFA to recognize the former footballers was Ba and national goalkeeper Bale Raniga.

In a 2017, Sportsone/Sun interview, Bale said it was bizarre that football administrators were inducted into Sports Hall of Fame but footballers who had immensely contributed to the game even ahead of his time were left out.

It comes late, then never and as FFA boss Rajesh Patel said, under the new FFA, everything is possible, or is it.

“It is about time the sacrifices of the former players are being given recognition."

And that brings back to the party crushers.


FFA made for a show to induct 5 former national reps, all deserving but the timing was out of place.

Or it just could be the use of the FFA facility in Vatuwaqa, had the hierarchy do what it did.

It would have befitted the inductees, Jone Ratu Vatukatakata, Rusiate Waqa, Kini Tubi, Vula Wate and Vilitate Lee, had they been bestowed a special night.

What we must hold high is that Saturday was Rewa Football Legends fundraiser and not an appreciation night of former national footballers.

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