By SHALENDRA PRASAD
Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama expressed his concerns on the standard of Fiji soccer while officially opening the 2013 Vodafone Fiji FACT at the ANZ Stadium on Saturday.
While addressing players, officials and patrons at the opening rounds in Suva, Bainimarama said Football in Fiji has too often been let down by the administrators at the national level.
“The current state of our national side is a constant cause of complaint and concern amongst fans: just look at all the letters to the editor written on the subject,” Bainimarama said.
“Personally, I have always believed that football has been a great unifying force within our country. It attracts players and fans from all backgrounds and brings them together. It’s one of our major national sports, and is much loved by Fijians across the country.
“In fact, football fans the world-over are known for their die-hard passion. I’m sure all gathered here today would agree and are die-hard fans themselves.
“That’s why we need to raise the quality and standard of Fijian football to the level our nation deserves.
“I remember the days when the standard of football was very good, one of the region’s best. That’s the standard we need to return to and improve on.”
Meanwhile, defending champions Suva and Ba have already secured a place in the semi-finals with two straight wins in the first two games from Group A with six points each.
In Group B, Lautoka has also recorded two wins in the opening matches.
HERE ARE THE FULL RESULTS FROM ROUND ONE:-
June 15 – Navua 1 Lautoka 2, Rewa 1 Nadi 0, Ba 3 Nadroga 0, Suva 2 Labasa 0. June 16 – Nadi 2 Navua 0, Lautoka 1 Rewa 0, Nadroga 0 Suva 1, Labasa 0 Ba 1.
The second round of matches continue at Nadi’s Prince Charles Park from Friday this week.