Legacy Cup focus on juniors

Caption: from left New Zealand High Commissioner to PNG Tony Fatu, PNG Sports Foundation Executive Director Peter Tsiamalili Jr and Capital Rugby Union President Jacob Anaga revealing the Jonah Lomu cup logo.

By FIDELIS SUKINA

THE Jonah Lomu Cup was announced during the week with emphasis on juniorrugby; the tournament is scheduled to kick off on the December 9-12.

The cup was launched with the unveiling of the logo at the New Zealand High Commission in Port Moresby. Fifteen men’s and nine women’s teams have confirmed their participation

The cup will be played on the 1st anniversary of Lomu’s death, and will be played among the Capital Rugby Union teams and four visiting teams from other provinces, there will be no prize money up for grabs, the registration fee is K500 and all proceeds go towards the development of junior and grassroots rugby.

The cup will be an annual event and has been sanctioned by the PNG Rugby Football Union (PNGRFU).

New Zealand High Commissioner to PNG Tony Fatu said the cup was to develop junior and grassroots rugby development, something that was lacking in Papua New Guinea rugby union.

He highlighted that it was the out pouring of condolences towards the rugby legend that the Jonah Lomu Cup was born.

“I was touched last year with the outpouring towards Jonah Lomu, I was so moved one of the things and now we have theopportunity to make the most of the legacy,” Fatu said.

“This is not only a legacy for Jonah Lomu and his family but a legacy for PNG as well, one of the things that New Zealand is keen on doing with the partners in PNG is to develop this wonderful game in PNG and the Pacific.

“It is very important to note something that is very important the all blacks wouldn’t be with out junior development and grassroots rugby. There would be no future without our juniors.

“The tournament will raise funds and support junior rugby and grassroots rugby corporate clients have the opportunity to help, and we will have the widow Nadene Lomu and their two boys Brayley and Dhyreillie also a former All Blacks to come to the tournament.”

Capital Rugby Union President Jacob Anaga said it was a way for pacific Islanders to honor his legacy and the pathway in which it coincides with Junior and grassroots rugby development will go a long way.

“Pacific Islanders honor this legacy that has bought honor and a lot of attention towards the pacific in rugby union, junior rugby and grassroots rugby is geared towards club rugby and the national team,” he said.

“One day we would like to see our young men and women grace the Olympics our fellow Islanders the Fijians have done it, there must be something the Fijians have that we don’t have, so we must associate ourselves with the World champions we have the population and the infrastructure, we just have to set a foundation, to make it to the overseas market to provide income for our players and develop a path were through rugby union our people can have a better future.”

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