Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search


Deposed Fijian President Made Mark On Cricket


Deposed Fijian President Made Mark On Cricket Field

Blenheim, June 7 - Ratu Sir Kamisese Mara could well have been left thinking it just wasn't cricket when his innings as Fiji's president came to an end recently.

After 30 years in the top order of Fijian politics, Ratu Mara was last week deposed by coup leader George Speight.

But those with long memories, such as Marlborough sporting historian Mick Jellyman, remember Ratu Mara from the cricket field as well as the coup zone.

Ratu Mara, now 80, was vice-captain of the Fijian cricket team when it toured New Zealand in 1954. When the team played Marlborough at Horton Park that February, Ratu Mara was captain and opening bowler.

Jellyman said Ratu Mara was an imposing figure and it was understandable why he was a paramount chief in his homeland.

``I recall he was one man that stood out among a team who you didn't know,'' he said.

Ratu Mara led from the front when Marlborough batted, taking three for 15 off 13 overs in the first innings and four for 29 from 17 overs in the second.

His batting did not trouble the scorers much though, being caught by Ray Jarrett from Terry ``Splinter'' Neal's bowling for a duck.

However he eventually led the touring team to a nine-wicket win in the two-day match.

Ratu Mara's tour ended early when he broke a bone in his hand attempting a difficult catch against Canterbury later that month.

Despite that, Ratu Mara came second in the Fijian team's bowling averages, picking up 35 wickets at 16 runs apiece. In the nine matches he played, his top score was 44 with an average of 13.

During the tour the team won eight matches, drew three and lost seven.

The 1954 New Zealand cricket almanac records that Ratu Mara had also played for Otago University and, later, Oxford University.

© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


NZ On Air TV Funding: More Comedy Comes Out Of The Shadows

Paranormal Event Response Unit is a series conceived by Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi as a TV spin-off from their highly acclaimed feature film What We Do In The Shadows. More>>


Mars News: Winners Announced For The 2016 Apra Silver Scroll Awards

Wellington singer-songwriter and internationally acclaimed musician Thomas Oliver has won the 2016 APRA Silver Scroll Award with his captivating love song ‘If I Move To Mars’. More>>


Scoop Review Of Books: Salt River Songs by Sam Hunt

Colin Hogg, a longtime comrade of Sam, writes in his Introduction that, ‘There is a lot of death in this collection of new poems by my friend Sam Hunt. It’s easier to count the poems here that don’t deal with the great destroyer than it is to point to the ones that do.’ More>>

Electronica: Restoring The World’s First Recorded Computer Music

University of Canterbury Distinguished Professor Jack Copeland and UC alumni and composer Jason Long have restored the earliest known recording of computer-generated music, created more than 65 years ago using programming techniques devised by Alan Turing. More>>


Scoop Review Of Books: Almost Getting Away With Murder

The Black Widow by Lee-Anne Cartier: Lee-Anne Cartier is the sister of the Christchurch man found to have been murdered by his wife, Helen Milner, after an initial assumption by police that his death, in 2009, was suicide. More>>

Howard Davis: Triple Echo - The Malevich/Reinhardt/Hotere Nexus

Howard Davis: The current juxtaposition of works by Ralph Hotere and Ad Reinhardt at Te Papa perfectly exemplifies Jean Michel Massing's preoccupation with the transmigration of imagery in a remarkable triple echo effect... More>>

Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news