Only five more matches for each team and the season of the Vodafone Premier League is over – who is going to lift the trophy this year? Very important matches for the outcome of the national league are going to be played this weekend throughout the country.
The only match to be played this Saturday (12th Aug) will see the Men in Black taking on Navua. The team coached by Ronil Lal needs a win if they want to decrease the margin to leaders Rewa after a heartbreaking defeat last weekend against Suva in the Fijian capital. Ba will expect the experience of Samuela Drudru and Abbu Zahid can combine well against the bottom ranked Navua.
The Navuans, in the other hand, come from a very important win over Labasa. The team captained by Vineet Chand has a real chance to leave the last place of the standings for the first time in a while if they are able to stop Ba. Navua will count again with their home fans as they did to surpass Labasa, expecting the brilliant Thomas Dunn can continue in his good form.
On Sunday Suva will receive Lautoka at ANZ Stadium, being just two points away the first-placed side Rewa. The fantastic run of Sairusi Nalaubu – scoring five goals in the last two matches – will be a problem for Ravinesh Kumar’s Lautoka. The Blues are not in a good moment, but they had shown good signs to bounce back in the season despite suffering a 3-2 loss against Nadi in the last weekend. The likes of Malakai Rakula and Zibraaz Sahib can be instrumental for Lautoka as the experienced Shazil Ali returned to trainings this week after a long period after suffering a broken leg; the midfielder might not be available for this weekend match, but he is set to reinforce Lautoka’s squad for the rest of the league.
Also on Saturday, but this time at Subrail Park, Fijian football fans will be watching closely the encounter of Labasa against Nasinu. The Babasiga Lions are living a terrible moment in the season especially after suffering a shocking defeat against Navua in the last weekend. Nasinu is just one point above Labasa in the run and will travel to Vanua Levu expecting to record a much needed win.
Labasa will count on the return of Antonio Tuivuna, Lekima Gonerau and Ilisoni Lolaivalu to the team after serving suspension – certainly the home fans will mark their presence at Subrail Park to help the Lions in this particular complicated moment. Nasinu will expect to bounce back from their 1-0 defeat last weekend against Rewa – counting on the likes of Jasnit Vikash and Nasoni Mereke to help them in this very important match.
The final match of the weekend will be played at Ratu Cakobau Park in Nausori as the leaders Rewa will meet Nadi – also a very important match in the weekend. Both sides come in good moments in the competition. The Delta Tigers are leading the standings with 20 points, but Nadi is only five away sitting 4th in the process.
The Fijian international Setareki Hughes is the key man for Rewa, while Rusiate Matarerega and Avinesh Suwamy combined 11 goals so far in the season for the Jetsetters. The match will be crucial for the outcome of the league – if Nadi can stun Rewa away from home, the Tigers might lose their top-spot and see Suva obtain the lead.
You can see the updated standings, results and top-scorers of the Vodafone Premier League season by visting our session of the league.