Radradra named for Test debut

International
Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

Former NRL star Semi Radradra will make his Test debut for Fiji in their Pacific Nations Cup clash against Georgia in Suva on Saturday.

Radradra, who was a standout on the wing for the Eels and now plays his club rugby for Toulon in France, will start at outside centre.

Fiji coach John McKee said Radradra had been in outstanding form for Toulon in the Top 14 club competition this season and for the Barbarians team that beat England at Twickenham.

Radradra also scored a scintillating try at the London Sevens two weeks ago on the way to Fiji winning the tournament trophy.

In other backline changes, France-based Nemani Nadolo is on the wing, former Waratahs and Crusaders playmaker Ben Volavola is at flyhalf and Jale Vatubua will start at inside centre.

Kini Murimurivalu and Vereniki Goneva, who were try-scorers in Fiji's 24-22 win over Samoa in the first round of the PNC last weekend, were named at fullback and on the right wing.Radradra starred in his Fiji Sevens debut. Photo: Getty ImagesMcKee said Fiji would need to be strong in the forwards to counter the powerful Georgia pack.

Meanwhile, Samoa coach Fuimaono Tafua made nine changes to his starting line-up for Saturday's Test against Tonga.

Props Jordan Lay and Viliamu Afatia join hooker Seilala Lam in an all-new front row. TJ Ioane will start on the openside flank and Jack Lam will move from that position to No.8. Joe Tekori joins captain Chris Vui in the second row.

Among the backs, Dwayne Polata'vao will start at scrumhalf, Alofa Alofa at outside centre and Paul Perez on the right wing. Former captain Ofisa Treviranus has been named on the bench.

Assistant coach and former Wallabies fullback Chris Latham said Tonga would be hard to beat after their 16-15 loss to Georgia last weekend.

"They will have a few tricks up their sleeves but we have got to make sure that we look after ourselves, take care of the ball and play the game on our terms," Latham said.

TEAM

Fiji team to face Georgia 

1. Campese Ma'afu

2. Ratu Vere Vugakot

 

3. Manasa Saulo

4. Apisalome Ratuniyarawa

5. Leone Nakarawa

6. Dominiko Waqaniburotu

 

7. Akapusi Qera (captain)

8. Viliame Mata

9. Henry Seniloli

10. Ben Volavola

11. Nemani Nadolo

12. Jale Vatubua

13. Semi Radradra

14. Vereniki Goneava 

15. Keni Murimurivalu

Reserves

16. Ratunaisa Navuma

17. Eroni Maw

18. Kalivati Tawake

19. Sikeli Nabou

20. Nemani Nagusa

21. Frank Lomani

22. Alivereti Veitokani

23. Timoci Nagusa