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Countdown to OFC Women’s Qualifier

Maruka Rodu
Head Coach

Bula Vinaka and welcome to another edition of this column. Last month we had the luxury of celebrating four birthdays in camp. Veniana, Timaima and Luisa all turned 20 whereas Aliza turned 18.
As usual, a cake was brought for the occasion, someone tuned the happy birthday song.
You can take it from me, there are some lousy singers in my team but I appreciate the effort they put into making the small gathering feel like home.
As a team tradition, the birthday girl makes a 200meter dash from one goal mouth to the other and back after we finish of with our normal session during that particular day.
While she makes her way to and from the goal the rest of the girls cheer her on at the top of their voices, singing, calling her names, passing remarks and when it seems to be a destressing moment the tradition appear to have a message of life attached to it.
As an individual we are destined on a journey, with purpose, pain and struggles. Amid these struggles there are some in society who will call you degrading names, but some will see you through your struggles.
Similarly when I see these girls take on the challenge of our birthday tradition, they would run the fastest.
They would run like they are running away from something, the quickness of their feet, their knee almost touching their chest.
The pain and distance is not an issue anymore because of the high pitch cheering from the team mates and the warm welcome and high fives that is awaiting them.
Last week a few more new faces joined our camp.
While it seems to be a very crucial phase of our preparation, the idea is to increase the competitiveness amongst the girls, to apply pressure mentally, and for the girls to deal with the emotions that comes with it.
This all is merely to keep them on their toes.
I would not want any of my girls getting to comfortable and dropping her guard as we approach the tournament dates. I want them to stay sharp as we approach our first game.
Definitely the new girls have put the team to work, competing for every spot in the final team.
I am glad that school holidays is coming around the corner, this means a change of training time to suit our game time. In Lautoka we will be playing 3 games under the 3pm heat therefore it is only logical that we fully utilize the 2 weeks school breaks by getting the girls out early and fine tuning their body clocks now. With 17 Days out the excitement is building up amongst the team and family members as we all look towards creating another history in Women Football in the country.
I will pen off for now till next week, moce mada.

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