Netani Scores for Cancer Kids
18 July, 2012
Fiji Rugby Captain Netani Talei is ready to score another try. This time he will cross the line by having his hair shaved off. Netani is the latest personality to join in the Walk on Walk Strong (WOWS) Shave or Save (SOS) campaign to raise money to help children with cancer.
The star back row 8, who led Fiji against Scotland in June, won’t be in Suva on August 4 when the SOS participants go bald.
He will instead say goodbye to his hair at a ceremony at the Edinburgh Rugby Club in Scotland, UK where he plays professionally. Video footage of Talei under the clippers, surrounded by his team mates, will be beamed to Suva for the WOWS public shaving.
“I really want to do this, because it’s for a good cause. I have two children of my own and I am so thankful that they are healthy” he said.
“I will give up my hair for child cancer victims, for WOWS and for Fiji Rugby. People look to national rugby players to be role models”.
The 29 year old was influenced by former 15s skipper Nicky Little, who signed up for the WOWS shave last year. He was encouraged to make his decision by Fijian culture expert Manoa Rasigatale when he taught the Flying Fijians the new Bole – Rugby Challenge.
“Manoa thought it would be a brilliant idea for me to follow Nicky’s lead and to be part of this year’s WOWS event and I agreed straight away”.
“My friends are always joking that I am starting to lose my hair already so I might as well let it all go at once”.
Yesterday Talei visited the children suffering from cancer at the CWM Hospital in Suva and donated presents to them.
Sina Kami, founder of the WOWS foundation said that they were very happy that Talei took the time out of his busy schedule to visit the children”.
“We are very happy that he has decided to take part in the SOS campaign”.
Kami also asked that all rugby players in Fiji get involved with the SOS campaign.
“These rugby players have the network all over the world; they could encourage their team mates to pledge ten dollars or even one dollar, towards a child with cancer, just by shaving off their hair”.
“Everyone knows that hair always grows back, but with these children once they have cancer, it is very hard for them to recover from it, I do hope that all other rugby players will follow Netani’s lead and join our campaign” she said.
Talei donated a rugby ball and jersey that was signed by the Flying Fijians for the Children’s Cancer Unit at CWM Hospital yesterday.
WOWS is short for Walk on Walk Strong, an inspiration song written and recorded by Sina’s daughter Tae Kami, as she was dying from cancer.