French Rugby's Fijian Star Chasers
31 March, 2011
|Gloucester's Akapusi Qera with the LV= Cup. |
A player's contribution to a game is often assessed by the media in terms of scoring his performance out of 10 known as a star rating. This rating normally covers the top end of the 1-10 scale, and is reserved for the above-average as follows:
3* - Outstanding (9-10).
2* - Excellent (8) .
1* - Worth mentioning (7).
The star system is simple and works well.
For the Fijians of the French 'Top 14' last weekend some had to sit it out on the bench with the return of internationals from the '6 Nations' which meant few opportunities for Fijian players to improve their 'star status' in the French top division.
Midi Olympique (the weekly rugby 'bible' in France,) after 22 of 26 matches completed in the first division, summarised their stars to date. It shows Seru Rabeni on 21 accumulated so far this season, leading the way amongst his fellow countrymen, and equal with the likes of French players, Jauzion and Trinh-Duc. 35 stars sets the pace.
A less desirable league table however shows Rabeni leading the way with respect to red (1) and yellow (3) cards received. For try scorers, Nagusa is well placed with 7. It should be noted that these figures do not take into consideration the total number of games played.
As far as last weekend was concerned Norman Ligairi and Seremaia Bai were the only ones to notch up another star.
However in the French second division - Pro 2 - they continued to 'star' and the performances of Fijian players were far more impressive, perhaps the reason for the impending move of many players next season to the 'Top 14'.
Two 3 star ratings were earned by Sevaro Rokobaro and Waisale Suka, out of a total of 13, another five 2 star rating going to Ropate Ratu, Dan Baleinadogo, Fatafehi, Vinaya Waka and Jone Daunivucu (who added 2 more tries to his already striking total of 8); that's 10% of those awarded.
Altogether there were 15 Fijians, out of a total of 25 able to play (injury etc) from Pro 2 , selected to start, with another 3 getting a star rating , the most interesting to note being Mosese Ratuvou, who managed only 15 minutes, before a thigh injury forced him off, but time enough to score a try. He will, however, be out of the top of the table clash against Albi, next Sunday, which will go a long way to deciding the one automatic promotion place.
To end this week's summary that saw Josh Matevesi, probably the only English born Fijian international, move to Racing Metro, three trivia questions on European based Fijians to mull over until next week.
1. Can you name the Fijian player from Naitasiri who has been capped three times for Italy?
2. Name the Fijian with one Eagles (U.S.A.) cap?
3. Two minutes - the total time on the pitch for his one appearance in white?
Answers next week.
As always Marc@ Rugbymarc