Fiji football’s top division will have a new contender next season, with Rakiraki earning promotion after taking out the Fiji Senior League play-off over the weekend.
Rakiraki took out the top spot in the play-off after defeating Central Division champions Lami 3-1 on Saturday and Northern Division champions Bua 1-0 on Sunday, turning their season around after losing to Bua earlier this year in the Courts IDC final pool game 3-2.
Their lone goal against Bua came from Asaeli Cobuta, who executed a calculated attempt from just outside the penalty box in the 10th minute.
With former Ba player Ronald Lawrence and former Lautoka and national team striker Salesh Sami Bula on the field, Rakiraki were a force to be reckoned with, but Bua coach Suresh Sharma believes his side was unlucky to concede a goal.
“It was a huge experience for us and even though we are the champion team in the North, I think we need more exposure to this level of competition,” Sharma said.
Rakiraki president Shaneel Goundar was impressed with the battle put in by their side and overjoyed for the milestone reached by the club.
“It’s celebration time for us now, we would have an executive meeting then decide the way to move forward,” he said.
“It is a proud moment for the people of Rakiraki as they will watch their team playing in the top level.”
Goundar looks forward to Rakiraki making their mark in Fiji’s major football tournaments such as the Fiji FACT, Battle of the Giants, Courts Inter-District Championship and the Premier League.
“We are looking forward to next year’s competition and to be playing top level football.”
The President now plans on switching focus to the future, developing current players and also looking to bring in new players with experience in the top division.
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