25-07-2023 Breakfast Bites, the FIJI & PACIFIC SPORTS NEWS Podcast, S06E25 #TeivovoSports #TeivovoDigital #TeivovoRugby



Talofa, Ma’lele’i, Bula and welcome to Season 06 Episode 25 of Breakfast Bites, the FIJI & PACIFIC SPORTS NEWS PODCAST, by people’s sports news on a hazy but bright Tuesday morning 25 July 2023.

Coming to you with tons of hanisi from the 180th meridian, in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. 

Talofa, Ma’lele’i, Bula and welcome to Season 06 Episode 25 of Breakfast Bites, the FIJI & PACIFIC SPORTS NEWS PODCAST, by people’s sports news on a hazy but bright Tuesday morning 25 July 2023.

Coming to you with tons of hanisi from the 180th meridian, in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.

In the FIFA World Cup

And in the FIFA World Cup Group Games yesterday: Italy 1-0 Argentina at Eden Park in Auckland, Germany 6-0 Morocco in Melbourne and Brazil 4-0 Panama in Adelaide.

Today’s games sees: Colombia vs Korea Republic 12pm in Sydney, New Zealand vs Philippines 5.30pm in Wellington and Switzerland vs Norway at 8pm in Hamilton.

The US team’s opening 3-0 win over Vietnam last Friday, drew 5.3 million viewers on Fox, plus another one million US viewers watched the game in Spanish on Telemundo.

In Rugby

The All Blacks face the Wallabies in the first of two Bledisloe Cup clashes at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Saturday, followed by the return Test in Dunedin next weekend.

While the Springboks play Los Pumas at Ellis Park in Johannesburg this weekend.

With New Zealand holding a four-point lead before facing Eddie Jones and his struggling wannabies, the clash between South Africa and Argentina is likely to decide who finishes runners-up.

After beating Tonga 20-36 at Churchill Park, Lautoka last Saturday Fiji now travels to Apia to play Manu Samoa at 1pm local time.

Many keyboard warriors have been very critical of the Fiji Water Flying Fijians performance. So in Background Buzz this morning at the end of this podcast, I take a closer at The Fiji Water Flying Fijians first game.

In rugby league

With seven rounds remaining until the finals, the NRL’s August transfer deadline is the final chance for teams to improve their roster for a charge at the title, however the Cowboys, South Sdyney and the Storm all have no spots left in their squads to make a play.

So, put Ben Hunt in the No.9 jersey and the Broncos become title insiders.

And with Maika Sivo suspended for four games, Parramatta could do with extra outside backs, who can provide attacking x-factor like Sivo or Clint Gutherson.

At the Tour de France

Danish rider Jonas Vingegaard claimed his second straight Tour de France victory in Paris on Sunday and collected the winner’s cheque for US$550,000.

Meanwhile, the second edition of the Tour de Frances Femmes — a new women’s event launched last year — began on Sunday in Clermont-Ferrand. The race will play out over seven stages, ending on Sunday 30 July.

In Sports Biz

David Beckham could not have dreamed of a better start as seven-time Ballon d’Or winner, Lionel Messi made fans wait until stoppage time to see his magic — netting a free kick to seal a 2-1 victory that set social media ablaze.

Among the stars watching Messi’s debut in person in Fort Lauderdale were Kim Kardashian, LeBron James and Serena Williams.

Messi’s Inter Miami shirt is selling out all over the US.

Meanwhile, Saudi Arabian club Al-Hilal have reportedly lodged an official bid of US$332Million to Paris Saint-Germain for Messi’s old teammate Kylian Mbappe.

BREAKING NEWS: It has been accepted by PSG.

Hopefully, this one mega-deal will release everything, currently log-jammed for totally opposite reasons: Tottenham Hotspur do not want to sell Harry Kane while PSG are desperate to sell Mbappe, which they have done.

So the potential chain reaction will likely go like this – PSG sells Mbappe and they will go even bigger for Harry Kane.

In combat sports

Watch out for WBC and WBO Super Bantamweight Champion Stephen ‘Cool Boy’ Fulton 21-0 fighting three-weight World Champion Naoya ‘Monster’ Inoue 24-0 with 21 by KO tonight in Tokyo.

Fulton will defend his titles against the Japanese superstar who has moved up from the bantamweight division to the junior featherweight limit to make this fight.

OK so in Background Buzz this morning, I take a closer at The Fiji Water Flying Fijians first game last Saturday in Lautoka.

Many keyboard warriors have been very critical of the Fiji Water Flying Fijians performance: Some even unloading personal slurs and attacks on some individual players!

First up – you gotta ask – “What exactly have many, if not all these keyboard warriors achieved in their lives? Have they excelled in sports, played for Fiji in anything? Or just loud – bashing away in the cocoon of their bedroom or wherever they feel safe.”

Many attacked fullback Sireli Maqala personally; he is a very talented utility back, having played more inside, so okay wasn’t outstanding and made a couple of glaring blunders at the back, but he also did some good things.

Fullback is not a strong point of this squad, but Fiji has options with other players.

Another loud criticism before the Test was the pairing of Josua Tuisova and Waisea Nayacalevu in the Centres – I put it to you that both played very strong games and both scored great tries!

Yes Tuisova may not be as creative as say, Jordie Barret but his strength is to hit the ball up and test the D – believe me that’s some test and best of luck trying to stop him.

And just when you think it’s over, Simon Raiwalui has the luxury of switching Tuisova out to the Wing and bringing on an even bigger Centre – many say the world’s best – Semi Radradra, who has his own unique skill sets, plus speed to burn!

Waisea Nayacalevu has played Centre for years in one of the top rugby competitions in the world – the French Top 14, and he is outstanding, so to suggest any less is plainly and simply ridiculous.

One of my main players of interest for me at Churchill Park on Saturday, was to see if young Caleb Muntz could take the pressure of starting such a tough Test on debut.

And he passed with flying colours on all metrics for a flyhalf – strong passing game, good kicking in general play, made his tackles, made one great 30M line break, put every free kick into touch as required, and most importantly converted all his shots at goal, bar one which bounced out off the post.

The onus now will be on Teti Tela and Ben Volavola to do better when their turn comes against Samoa and Japan.

Some critics also bagged Frank Lomani – maybe it’s his confident showy nature, but I like him for his high energy, rugby smarts – always alert for a quick tap and go, his speed off the mark, his excellent pass both sides of the scrum and his utility value as a backup goal kicker and Wing – need I say more?

Pound for pound, Frank Lomani is one of the most valuable players in this squad, as he was for the Fijian Drua all season.

And yes when he tires, Peni Matawalu is an excellent replacement.

The Fiji Water Flying Fijians forwards also came in for some stick, again by keyboard warriors – HELLO they were up against Tonga – a team who have no fear and just love to play it tough and tight through their forwards all day long.

Agree, the Fiji forwards were found wanting in some key areas of the game, but one of the big positives is that they hung in and pulverized the Tongan forwards in two big scrums – the second one resulting in a pushover try for halfback Peni Matawalu diving on the ball over the try line at the base.

That was a huge statement after 80 minutes of rugby against a very tough forwards-dominated team like Ikale Tahi.

So I say hats off to Levani Botia and the forwards for a job well done in a very tough day at the office.

In fact, for Tonga – their backs were wiped out by the Fiji Water Flying Fijian all-star backs, while their forwards pretty much won their battles upfront for most of the game.

In the end, it was a typically tough Test between Pasifika rivals who will both be much better for it, come their respective turns against the technically well-coached and structured Japanese, and beyond.

So settle down keyboard warriors and watch this Fiji team go!

And that’s a wrap!

For TEIVOVOsports.com I’m Culden Kamea – Mahalo, vinaka and thank you. Please hit the subscribe button below if you would like to receive more Pasifika sports highlights on Breakfast Bites. And tank you all too mas for all your love and support.  

Mahalo, vina’a and tank you all too mass for all your love and support.

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