The 2018 Vodafone Vanua Championship formerly known as the B Division Competition was launched in style at the Grand Pacific Hotel in Suva today.
The launch was conducted following a four hour rules and regulations workshop with all participating captains and team representatives from the 16 respective unions in both the U20s and Senior category.
Fiji Rugby Union CEO, Mr John O’Connor thanked Vodafone Fiji Limited for their continuous support and sponsorship towards the Vodafone Vanua Championship which showed their commitment towards developing rugby at grass roots level.
“I would like to thank Vodafone Fiji Limited for always being by the FRU’s side when it comes to supporting rugby at grass roots level. This is very encouraging for all the teams playing in the tournament, as they compete for two spots in the 2019 Premier Competition.”
“The feedback from the Teams on the changed format from last year has been very positive and it was a learning experience for them. The representatives from the 16 teams here today are all excited since they have learned from last year and have started preparation early to fight for promotion into the 2019 Premier Competition. We are excited also and look forward to the start of the competition. Competition will be very tough, since all teams have been in preparation since the start of the year”. The CEO FRU wished all the Teams the best for the 2018 Vodafone Vanua Championship (Senior and U20s.)”
Vodafone Fiji Limited’s Chief Marketing Officer, Rajnesh Prasad said that they were delighted to reaffirm Vodafone’s sponsorship to the Vodafone Vanua Rugby Championship.
“With Vodafone’s financial injection to what was previously considered a miniscule event is fast becoming an elite platform for our aspiring ruggers to showcase their talent to be drafted into the mainstream competition. The Vodafone Vanua Championship has re-ignited interest in the competition since our sponsorship last year.”
“The Vanua rivalry is an epitome of the Fijian history and way of life. This friendly rivalry when enters the rugby field produces some fiery competition. The revamp of the competition format with Vodafone’s sponsorship has breathed new life into the Vanua championship with much greater interest from budding players at the grassroots level. Vodafone has habit of taking small and unknown events and making these into much admired and revered landmarks that everyone wants to be a part off.”
“No longer is the competition just a rushed two-week side event. It’s an important recognized event in the FRU calendar of events. The 2018 competition will feature two pools of eight teams competing for qualification into the eliminations rounds and eventually Championship title.”
All participating teams received a full set of Playing Kit for the U20s and Senior teams, 10 rugby balls and the FRU participation grant for the Unions that had complied with the compliance requirements.
The new kits were also unveiled by the team Captains, showcasing their provincial colours and logos.
There are two pools for the Vodafone Vanua Championship comprising of the Central and Northern divisions for one pool and Western teams for the other pool, with the top two from each pool to proceed to the Semi Finals.
The competition will kick off on Saturday, 14 April, 2018.