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Fiji Rugby Centenary Conference Update

Fiji Rugby Centenary Conference Update

The University of the South Pacific in collaboration with the Fiji Rugby Union, the New Zealand High Commission and Suva Point Apartments will be hosting the Fiji Rugby Centenary Conference, titled ‘Reflections on the Past, Present and the Future’, from 1 to 2 July, 2013, at its Laucala Campus in Suva.

At a media update held at the University, today, the Dean of the Faculty of Arts, Law and Education (FALE), Dr Akanisi Kedrayate, thanked the sponsors and said the conference will also facilitate discussion between researchers, rugby administrators, players, journalists, supporters and other stakeholders.

“The conference celebrates the Centenary of the FRU and will serve as a precursor to the FRU celebrations. The conference provides a unique forum for disseminating cutting-edge research on Fiji rugby,” she said.

“The FRU has welcomed and endorsed this conference and the University is pleased with its close partnership with the FRU,” she added.

She identified that rugby and other sport other than being a physical activity, are also mental, social, and economic activities, which makes them an important academic area for sports science and social scientific inquiry.

Stating its significance to the USP Strategic Plan 2013- 2018, she said the conference also makes excellent contributions to University’s endeavour to achieve the aims and goals outlined in the Strategic Plan, especially in Priority Area 3: Research and Internationalisation and Priority Area 5: Regional and Community Engagement.

Chief Executive Officer of FRU, Mr Manasa Baravilala touched on the significance of the centenary for FRU, and extended his appreciation to the University for recognising and adding value to the event.

“This is a proud moment for all of us, especially as this is the first time the FRU has entered into such a partnership with USP,” he said.

Mr Baravilala talked about the partnership between the University and the FRU, and said that they wished to strengthen the relationship. The Chair of the FRU Board, Filimon Waqabaca, and other official will be participating in the conference.

New Zealand Trade Commissioner to Fiji, Mr Peter Lund expressed his appreciation for the University’s efforts in recognising the centenary.

He highlighted on the long rugby history that is shared between New Zealand and Fiji. The New Zealand High Commission has offered to host an opening reception and to sponsor Mr Eric Rush, a distinguished New Zealand rugby player, to address the conference as a keynote speaker.

He added that the New Zealand High Commission will provide its full support to Fiji Rugby and the University in making the centenary event successful.

The rugby conference will be opened by the President of Fiji, H.E. Ratu Epeli Nailatikau. Key speakers at the event will be Mr Pio Bosco on 1 July and by Mr Rush and Professor Niko Besnier from the University of Amsterdam on 2 July.

The conference sessions consist of individual presentations and panel discussions delivered by a mix of local and overseas researchers, former/current rugby players, officials and professionals. Members of the public are welcome to attend the presentations and panel discussions at the conference.


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