Fijian Home Game?

Discussion in 'St George Illawarra Dragons' started by thebigredv, Jul 27, 2017.

  1. thebigredv

    thebigredv Juniors

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    How awesome is this!

    St George Illawarra Dragons in move to stage landmark home NRL game in Fiji

    St George Illawarra are in talks to take an NRL game outside of Australia and New Zealand for the first time as part of a bid by Fiji to stage two competition matches next season.

    The AFL made waves in May when the code ventured to China for a premiership match between Port Adelaide and the Gold Coast Suns and the NRL is now also on the brink of heading abroad.
    Manly and Canberra endeavoured unsuccessfully to play a fixture in Shenzhen, north of Hong Kong, in 2014 – but they have never got off the ground.

    But with the Fiji NRL lobbying its government for funding and the Dragons open to expanding their horizons with their venue contracts expiring at the end of this season, a landmark match away from Australia and New Zealand is now on the cards.
    St George Illawarra declined to comment when contacted on Wednesday but Fiji NRL chief executive Timoci Naleba has spoken about the league-mad country's desire to hold elite matches there.
    "We have given our proposal to the government for their consideration and we are waiting for their response on the proposal," Naleba said last week. "I am working on that proposal with Fijian residents in Australia who are trying to get these type of events to boost sports tourism in Fiji. We are working hard with the NRL to make this happen, to get two matches to Fiji."

    The Dragons are also understood to have been approached by interested parties in Christchurch and Auckland about taking a home game across the Tasman, with suitors well aware of the joint-venture's strong travelling supporter base.


    The club is considering the Fijian offer due to the uncertainty over when the re-development of ANZ Stadium will commence. The nomadic Dragons use various venues as their home ground: their schedule this year has them playing two home matches at Sydney Olympic Park, as well as five at Jubilee Oval, four at WIN Stadium and one against South Sydney at the SCG. The Anzac Day game at Allianz Stadium alternates each year between being a Dragons and Sydney Roosters home game.

    The Dragons' main venue deals end this season and while they will retain a base of fixtures in Wollongong and at Kogarah they are looking to shift away from ANZ Stadium ahead of the looming re-development of the venue into a world-class rectangular stadium.

    That work is set to begin 2019 but as reported by Fairfax Media on Tuesday NRL chief executive Todd Greenberg is pushing for the start to be shifted forward amid continuing confusion about the breakdown of Sydney's $1.6 billion state government stadia funding.

    The bid by Fiji to host games comes with the country also seeking to enter a team into a re-modelled Intrust Super Premiership next season. It is believed they have been set a deadline of October 31 to stump up a bank guarantee to the NSWRL in order to gain admission.

    Fiji's hopes of replicating their 2013 World Cup semi-final appearance at this year's tournament, meanwhile, have also been boosted by Jarryd Hayne's confirmation this week that he will turn out for the Bati if he does not make Mal Meninga's Australian squad.

    It's been great to play both for Australia and Fiji," Hayne said. "It's obviously up to the coach but I'm probably looking at Fiji at the moment given the amount of talent Australia's got."
     
  2. TomRedVRiver

    TomRedVRiver Bench

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    Just on Fijians for a moment, when Nighty retires and we're looking at wingers to replace him.. f**k me it would be good to have a serious crack at Vunivalu. Off contract at the end of 2018, he would be amazing to pick up.
     
  3. dragonssamy61

    dragonssamy61 First Grade

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    He would be a great buy.
    But do you think melbourne will let him go.
    I don't
     
  4. Bests Golden Boots

    Bests Golden Boots Bench

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    Yeah. Get rid of more home games, that's the ticket to success.
     
  5. Bests Golden Boots

    Bests Golden Boots Bench

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    Speaking of home games.
    I realise we are a joint venture and need to split our home games between Kogarah and the Gong.
    But is there a case to be made to play them all at one ground in a row.
    Say the first half of the season at the Gong and the back half at Kogarah, the stupid "legacy rounds" in the middle.
    Going to the football should be a habit, if you could rely on the team playing at the same ground every two weeks I think you'd get better crowds.
    In the past we have had one game at Kogarah and had to wait two months for the next one, this doesn't encourage fans to turn up.
     
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  6. dino2170

    dino2170 Juniors

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    it would be nice to have a holiday and to see a game
     
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  7. BringTheNoise

    BringTheNoise Juniors

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    As long as its one of the games that would have been pencilled in for ANZ. If it means even less games at Kogarah or WIN then I'm not a fan.

    Other than that I could think of worse places to play a game of footy. Maybe a can coincide I nice holiday over there with this match.
     
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  8. grouch

    grouch First Grade

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    Yeah I don't mind it, and I'm dead against the RGRV fiasco. At least it's "spreading the gospel" in a way. Once upon a time our club had that kind of ambition
     
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  9. dragonssamy61

    dragonssamy61 First Grade

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    Bring the noise
    Agree 100%.
    Instead of ANZ is a great idea.
     
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  10. flamin

    flamin Juniors

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    Love this idea. It enhances the Dragons brand and allows us to link up with the Fiji NRL with the potential to unearth another Vunivalu, Radradra, etc.
     
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  11. Gareth67

    Gareth67 First Grade

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    Isn't it what ! There is so much skill in those Fijian players , a bit raw perhaps , but still skill and athleticism . Should Millward take his spectacles with him , he may even come across one of those big prop or 2nd row forwards . Who knows , someone similar to the great Apisai Toga from the 60's ?
     

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    Last edited: Jul 28, 2017
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  12. dragonssamy61

    dragonssamy61 First Grade

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    Even his brother. Rip
    That would be great.
     
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  13. Old Timer

    Old Timer Coach

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    If the NRL have any brains and consider this worthwhile they should have games in successive weekends (4 different sides) so as someone rightly said you can combine some footy with a nice holiday.
     
  14. tevoro

    tevoro Bench

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    Sign this bloke up.... Currently getting limited opportunities with the Fiji 7s team. Hasn't scored an overseas contract as yet (#11 in the vid)

     
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