The Vodafone Women’s Senior League final play-off is set to kick off on the 23 February, and with the development seen in the women’s game in Fiji, title contenders Ba are expecting tough competition.
The Ba women’s football team qualified for the playoff after a 3-0 victory against Nadi at Nadi Sangam School on Saturday, topping the Western with 18 points and two games in hand.
The ‘Ladies in Black’ will take on the winners of the Northern and Southern divisions for the national title. Labasa has already qualified as the Northern division and Rewa is likely to represent the Southern divison.
Fiji Football Association Development Officer Tupua Waifune has noticed the increase in talent in the different women’s divisions and feels confident that the stronger domestic competition will benefit Fiji on the international stage.
“I’m happy to see the improvement in their skills and knowledge of the game,” he said.
“These girls are always interested to play every Saturday. This is a build up to the OFC qualifications in the U-17 and U-19 to the U-17 World Cup and the U-20 World Cup,” he added.
Tailevu Naitasiri FC coach and OFC Just Play Programme Coordinator Laisani Mataele has also noticed the increase of talented female footballers and believes the sport for development programme has played a key role in attracting women and girls to the game.
“The girls have improved compared to when they were introduced to the sport,” she said.
“Most didn’t understand the basics of soccer, now they master how to control the ball and pass. They have been doing well,” she added.
The final play-off will be held at Fiji Football Association Academy ground in Vatuwaqa, Suva, from 23-25 February.