Joint Media Release from FRU & Fiji Airways
29th August 2017
The Fiji Rugby Union (FRU) today announced that Fiji Airways, Fiji’s National Airline, will become the Naming rights sponsor of the Fijian Drua team which will compete in Australia’s National Rugby Competition (NRC). The team will now be known as the Fiji Airways Drua and prominently feature the airline on the front and lower back of all playing kits.
The announcement comes on the eve of the first NRC match on September 2nd and coincides with the official NRC launch in Sydney, where Seru Vularika represented the Fiji Airways Drua with representatives of all other NRC teams.
Speaking of the sponsorship, FRU Chief Executive officer, John O’Connor said “We’re thrilled to welcome Fiji Airways as the inaugural naming rights sponsor of the Fijian Drua. To have the support of such an iconic Fijian company and our national airline is a wonderful boost for our team, as we prepare for the first match in our first NRC Season.”
O’Connor said that Fiji Airways and the FRU have had a long and successful partnership with the airline regularly flying and looking after various Fiji Rugby Teams over many years. “It’s exciting for Fiji Rugby to extend this partnership with Fiji Airways, especially with both of our companies being flagbearers for our country on the global stage”
Mr. Andre Viljoen, Fiji Airways Managing Director and CEO said: “We are thrilled to welcome the Fiji Airways Drua to our family and look forward to supporting them through the NRC campaign. It’s wonderful to have a Fijian team playing against some of the best players in Australia, in front of thousands of fans both in-stadium and on television. Australia is the biggest market for Fiji Airways as well as Fijian tourism, and this exposure through the Fiji Airways Drua will complement our various promotional activities there. To commemorate our partnership as the Fiji Airways Drua literally takes flight, we will be offering Fijians an exciting discount to attend the team’s initial matches in Australia. Details of this will be announced in the next few days.”
The announcement comes days after FRU unveiled Paradise Beverages as a major sponsor of the team, with Fiji Gold and Ratu Rum to be featured on the sleeve and upper back of the jersey.
“To have two companies of the calibre of Fiji Airways and Paradise Beverages sponsoring our new NRC team is a significant vote of confidence in our team, and we look forward to watching them run out in their new jerseys against Brisbane City this Saturday” said O’Connor.
The 2017 NRC competition will be contested over nine rounds run for 11 weeks, with four games hosted in Fiji. The Fiji Airways Drua will kick off their season opener on Saturday, 2 September against Brisbane City at Ballymore in Brisbane at 3pm (AST). On 9 September, they play against Melbourne Rising at the Harlequin Oval in Melbourne.
Fans of the Fiji Airways Drua will see their heroes in action in Round 3 and 4 in their first home fixture against NSW Country Eagles at Lawaqa Park in Sigatoka on September 16 and then against Perth Spirit on 23 September at the ANZ Stadium in Suva.
Rounds 5 and 6 sees the team travelling back to Australia for their match against the Canberra Vikings on 29 September at Viking Park in Canberra and Greater Sydney Rams on 7 October at TG Millner Oval, Sydney.
Round 7 the team will be on bye, but Rounds 8 and 9 sees the Fiji Airways Drua hosting QLD Country at Churchill Park in Lautoka on 21 October and Sydney Rays at the ANZ Stadium in Suva on 28 October.
For further information please contact either:
Talei Thomas, Fiji Rugby Union Media Officer on firstname.lastname@example.org or 8903855, or Shane Hussein, General Manager Corporate Communications on 9906164 or Shane.Hussein@fijiairways.com.