Fijian Drua reveal their 'home' for Super Rugby Pacific
NEWS: The Fijian Drua confirmed they will be stationed in Australia for the inaugural Super Rugby Pacific season.
The Fijian Drua have been included in the Super Rugby Pacific competition format announced by New Zealand Rugby (NZR) and Rugby Australia (RA on Monday.
The Fijian side will feature alongside five New Zealand clubs (Blues, Chiefs, Crusaders, Highlanders and Hurricanes) five Australian clubs (Brumbies, Rebels, Waratahs, Reds and Western Force) as well as fellow Super Rugby Pacific debutants, Moana Pasifika.
The inclusion of the two new sides is major news for Samoa and Fiji.
However, Fiji Rugby chairman Conway Beg has announced the team will be based entirely in Australia for “at least” the inaugural 2022 season.
He said the intention was for the team to return to Fiji for 2023.
“This was a difficult but necessary decision to ensure that our first season in Super Rugby was as disruption-free as possible in order to achieve our first season objectives.
“We need to give our team every opportunity for success, and the uncertainty around restriction-free travel between Fiji, Australia and New Zealand as early as February 2022 due to COVID-19 was just too great a risk. For this reason, the Fijian Drua will be based in Australia for the 2022 season, playing their home and away matches in Australia and New Zealand.”
“Even though the Fijian Drua will not host a home match in Fiji next year, this remains a joyful day for Fijian rugby fans.
“It will most definitely be a sacrifice for our players, coaching staff and team management to be away from Fiji for the duration of the season, similar to the sacrifices by other Fijian teams to participate and succeed in other competitions [most notably, the Olympics].
“But everyone realises the massive opportunity Super Rugby Pacific presents for our players and for the future of our fifteens programme.”