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Dublin: 14 °C Tuesday 7 April, 2020

Clermont's newest flying Fijian, 21-year-old Raka, ripped Toulouse apart

The Top 14 side’s links to the Nadroga Rugby Union are paying off.

CLERMONT’S OFFICIAL LINK with the Nadroga Rugby Union in Fiji continues to pay dividends with the emergence of 21-year-old wing Alivereti Raka.

The lightning-quick Raka, who can also play centre, is the latest product of Clermont’s partnership with Nadroga, with brilliant back row Peceli Yato and wing Uwa Tuwalo [now with Oyonnax] both having come from the same Fijian union.

Source: TOP 14 - Officiel/YouTube

Raka originally moved to Clermont-Ferrand to join ASM’s academy in 2014, but has had to wait until the current season for first-team opportunities.

With five tries in his first five Top 14 starts, including a stunning brace against Toulouse yesterday in a 32-23 win for ASM, Raka has signalled his deep potential.

While the defence for both of his scores against former European giants Toulouse was poor, the pace, power and evasion skills of Raka underlined that he will be a major threat for years to come.

Source: TOP 14 - Officiel/YouTube

Clermont formerly had Nadroga man Napolioni Nalaga on the wing, but the 29-year-old joined Lyon last year after a move to Toulon fell through.

Number eight Yato, who played for Fiji at the World Cup, has been excellent for Clermont since moving from Nadroga.

The partnership sees ASM send coaches and officials to Fiji to help with the structures and development in Nadroga, but it’s clear to see what the French club is gaining from the link.

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About the author:

Murray Kinsella

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