Francis Smith Cook Islands Captain and Tunui Anania Tahiti Captain were joined by the newly crowned Miss Cook Islands, Alana Smith and Miss Cook Islands International, Silas Tuaputa today at Tuoro - Nga’i Rereanga Vaerua (Black Rock – Departure Point of Spirits) between the districts of Te-Au-o-Tonga and Puaikura on the Island of Rarotonga in the Cook Islands.
A fitting location for the beginning of the battle for the Cook Islands and Tahiti teams as Tuoro means to challenge by calling out loudly. Adding to the iconic Cook Island location was the Ru Tauta drummers who are currently in competition at the Te Maeva Nui 2017.
Speaking ahead of the Oceania Rugby Cup this Friday, Tunui Anania said he “wanted everyone who loves Tahiti and Cook Islands to come to the game on Friday it will be a good game, the Tahiti team were very happy to be in the Cook Islands.”
Echoing him was Cook Islands Captain Francis Smith who is “keen to see everyone turn up in green to come and support the boys”, saying it had been an exciting week in camp in preparation for the match on Friday.
Earlier today the Minster of Sport for the Cook Islands Government, Hon. Albert Nicholas, joined by Hon. Kiriau Terepu, hosted a lunch for both teams at the Cook Islands Government House. He welcomed both teams to the Cook Islands on behalf of the Prime Minister, Cabinet and the Government of Cook Islands wishing both teams luck in the tournament.
More information on the Oceania Rugby Cup and past winners: HERE
More information on the Rugby World Cup qualification: HERE
More information on the Te Maeva Nui 2017: HERE
More information on the Miss Cook Islands Association: HERE
2017 Oceania Rugby Cup Fixture
Friday 4 August
Cook Islands v Tahiti New Zealand, 3pm CKT
Venue: Cook Islands National Stadium, Rarotonga, COOK ISLANDS
Broadcast details: Livestreamed on Oceania Rugby Facebook and www.culture.gov.ck/rugby