Semi Radradra

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Semi Radradra
Semi Radradra.jpg
Radradra in 2014
Birth name Semi Radradra Turagasoli Waqavatu[1]
Date of birth (1992-06-13) 13 June 1992 (age 26)
Place of birth Suva, Fiji
Height 190 cm (6 ft 3 in)
Weight 100 kg (15 st 10 lb)
Rugby league career
Position(s) Wing
Senior career
Years Team Apps (Points)
2013–2017 Parramatta Eels 94 (330)
National team(s)
Years Team Apps (Points)
2013–2014
2016
2016
2016
Fiji
NRL All Stars
Australia
Prime Minister's XIII
4
1
1
1
(4)
(4)
(0)
(0)
Rugby union career
Position(s) Centre / Wing / Fullback
Senior career
Years Team Apps (Points)
2017–2018
2018–
Toulon
Bordeaux
23
0
(20)
(0)
Correct as of 28 May 2018
National team(s)
Years Team Apps (Points)
2018
2018
Barbarians
Fiji
1
1
(5)
(5)
National sevens team(s)
Years Team Comps
2018 Fiji sevens 2

Semi Radradra Turagasoli Waqavatu (born 13 June 1992) is a Fijian professional rugby player who currently plays rugby union for Bordeaux in the French Top 14 competition. Primarily playing on the wing on both codes of rugby, Radradra previously played rugby league for the Parramatta Eels in the National Rugby League. He played international rugby league for Fiji and Australia, and has also represented Fiji in sevens at international level.

Background

Hailing from the village of Somosomo in Taveuni, Radradra worked in the mines in Vatukoula and owned his own kava farm in Fiji.[2] He played amateur rugby union for the Vatukoula Rugby Union club, and was selected to represent the Fiji U20 team at the 2011 IRB Junior World Championship, playing at centre in four matches.[3] Later the same year, Radradra represented the Fiji national rugby sevens team at the 2011 Dubai Sevens,[4] where he was scouted by the Parramatta Eels.[2]

Rugby league

Early career

Radradra playing for the Wentworthville Magpies in 2013

Radradra played for the Parramatta Eels NYC team in 2012 before moving on to their New South Wales Cup team, the Wentworthville Magpies.

2013

In round 18, Radradra made his NRL debut for the Eels against the Penrith Panthers on the wing in the Eels 10–17 loss at Parramatta Stadium.[5] In round 20, against the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs, Radradra scored his first NRL try in the Eels 12–40 loss at ANZ Stadium.[6] Radradra finished his debut year in the NRL with him playing in 7 matches and scoring 5 tries. Radradra was selected in the Fiji squad for the World Cup,[1] playing in 3 matches and scoring a try in the 12–34 loss to England.[7]

2014

In February, Radradra was selected in the Eels inaugural Auckland Nines squad and was the tournament's highest try scorer with 5 tries, alongside the North Queensland Cowboys Kyle Feldt.[8] In round 1, against the New Zealand Warriors, Radradra scored a hat-trick in the Eels' 36–16 win at Parramatta Stadium, earning the nickname Semi-Trailer.[9][10] In May, Radradra played for Fiji in the 2014 Pacific Rugby League International against Samoa at centre in the 16–32 loss.[11] On 4 June, Radradra re-signed with the Eels on a 4-year contract worth $1 million until the end of the 2018 season.[12] He was named 2014 Dally M Winger of the year.[13] Radradra played in all of the Eels 24 matches and scored 19 tries. He was awarded the Fiji Bati International Player of the Year Award.

2015

At the start of the year, Radradra again played for the Eels in the Nines.[14] In round 1, against the Manly Warringah Sea Eagles, he scored a hat-trick of tries in the Eels' 42–12 win at Parramatta Stadium.[15] Radradra was the first player to score consecutive hat-tricks in the first round of two separate NRL seasons. In round 17, against the West Tigers, he broke a 61-year-old record by becoming the first player to score 2 or more tries in 5 consecutive games when he scored his double in the Eels' 28–16 win at ANZ Stadium.[16] The previous record was held by Ray Preston.[17] In the final round of the season against the Canberra Raiders, Radradra scored 2 tries in the Eels' golden-point 24–28 loss to finish with 24 tries in 18 games, making him the top try-scorer of the season.[18] This was a club record, surpassing Steve Ella's previous record of 23 tries.[19] Radradra was named the Dally M Winger of the Year, for the second year in a row,[20] and was named on the wing in the 2015 RLIF Team of the Year, the first Fijian player to do so.

2016

On 1 February 2016, Radradra again played in Auckland Nines.[21] On 13 February, he played for the World All Stars against the Indigenous All Stars in the 2016 All Stars match, playing on the wing and scoring a try in his team's 12–8 win at Suncorp Stadium.[22][23][24] Early into the 2016 season, he declared that he wanted to play international football for Australia after he found out he was qualified for Australia on residency grounds, so he changed allegiances from Fiji, commenting "I want to be known as the best Fijian rugby player around the world and I want to be playing the top teams," Radradra said. "I want to play alongside all the big names. That's how I made my decision and Australia is the right team for me to showcase my talent".[25] However, while being eligible for Australia, he was ruled ineligible for New South Wales because he didn't play junior football in the state before the age of 13.[26] His decision to switch over to play for Australia drew plenty of criticism in the lead-up to the 2016 Anzac Test.[27] On 6 May 2016, Radradra made his debut for Australia against New Zealand in the Anzac Test.[28] He played on the wing and was sin-binned early into the match for a professional foul in the 16–0 win at Hunter Stadium.[29] In June 2016, Radradra was charged with domestic violence which happened in 2014 and 2015 against his ex-partner and it was rumoured that he wouldn’t return to play for Parramatta.[30][31] Radradra finished his highly published 2016 NRL season with him playing in 19 matches and scoring 12 tries for the Eels. On 24 September 2016, Radradra played in the Prime Minister’s XIII team against Papua New Guinea, where he played on the wing and scored a try in the 58–0 win in Port Moresby.[32] In October 2016, Radradra was overlooked from Mal Meninga’s 24-man Australia Kangaroos 2016 Four Nations squad due to him being on trial for domestic violence charges.[33]

2017

In round 2, against the St George Illawarra Dragons, Radradra scored a career best 4-tries in the 34–16 victory at WIN Stadium. Radradra was the first Eels player to score 4 tries in match since Jarryd Hayne during the 2006 NRL season.[34]. On August 24, Radradra scored 4 tries in Parramatta's big win over Brisbane 52–34[35]. The following week, Radradra scored a hat-trick in Parramatta's victory over Souths to seal a top four spot[36]. In his final game for Parramatta, Radradra scored a 90-metre solo try in Parramatta's elimination final loss to North Queensland[37]. Radradra finished 2017 with 22 tries in 26 appearances [38].

Rugby union

Toulon

In late 2016, it was widely rumoured – and later confirmed in January, 2017 – that Radradra had signed a one-year deal for French, Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur, Top 14 club Toulon.[39][40] With the possibility for it to become two years. The deal would not take place until succession of the 2017 NRL season. Radradra made his debut for Toulon in round 7 of the 2017–18 Top 14 season against Bordeaux.[41][42] Radradra scored his first try for the club in the European Rugby Champions Cup with his first touch of the game and just 62 seconds into the match on 21 October 2017, against Italian club Benetton.[43][44] This followed his Toulon debut a fortnight in advance.

Bordeaux

On February 2 2018, Radradra signed a two-year deal with French, Top 14, Toulon rivals, Bordeaux.[45][46] Shattering hopes he might return to his former rugby league club, Parramatta of the NRL.

Barbarians

Radradra was selected for the Barbarians to face England in May 2018.[47] Scoring one try and winning the match by 18 points (45–63) at Twickenham Stadium, London, Radradra was named man of the match.[48][49]

Fiji

In May 2018, Radradra was named in John McKee's 2018 Pacific Nations Cup for Fiji.[50]

Rugby sevens

Fiji

Radradra was named in the Fiji squad at the 2018 London Sevens tournament.[51] Radradra scored three tries in total, winning the title and beating South Africa 21–17 at Twickenham Stadium, London.[52][53][54]

Personal life

Semi Radradra has received a nickname over the years being called "Semi Trailer".[55]

In early 2017, Radradra was charged with two counts of domestic-violence related common assault toward his ex-partner.[56]

In early May after very public revelations the charges were dropped when in court it was revealed that his ex-partner was lying in an attempt to blackmail Radradra.[57]. In the aftermath of the charges being dropped, television personality Erin Molan was publicly slammed by a small number of fans and by sections of the media for supposedly painting Radradra as being guilty and not giving the player the presumption of innocence when the allegations were first aired. Molan was asked by fans and the media to make a public apology to Radradra but no apology was forthcoming; Molan had publicly stated that Radradra deserved the presumption of innocence, and rather than being specifically about his case, her comments were about what the NRL’s stance ought to be in the event of domestic violence being found proven against any player, regardless of caliber. [58][59]

References

  1. ^ a b "Fiji Announce Rugby League World Cup Squad". Triple M. 10 October 2013. Archived from the original on 4 August 2016. 
  2. ^ a b Proszenko, Adrian (10 March 2014). "Kava farmer Semi Radradra drawn to Eels by Jarryd Hayne". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 15 September 2017. 
  3. ^ 2011 IRB Junior World Championship match reports from World Rugby: France U20 24 - 12 Fiji U20; Fiji U20 26 - 18 Tonga; Wales U20 20 - Fiji U20 34; Fiji U20 17 - 104 South Africa U20.
  4. ^ "Sevens: Jarryd Hayne gets backing from former Fiji sevens and Eels star". NZ Herald. 21 May 2016. Retrieved 15 September 2017. Semi Radradra (L) playing for Fiji during the Dubai Rugby Sevens World Series semi-final in 2011. 
  5. ^ Daniel Lane (13 July 2013). "NRL: Penrith beat Parramatta 17-10". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 2015-10-25. 
  6. ^ Michael Carayannis. "Plenty of points but patience missing for Bulldogs, says Hasler". Smh.com.au. Retrieved 2015-10-25. 
  7. ^ Bott, Richard (2013-11-09). "England 34 Fiji 12 - Rugby League World Cup 2013: report". Dailymail.co.uk. Retrieved 2015-10-25. 
  8. ^ "Squads For Auckland Nines". Rugby League Week. 14 February 2014. Archived from the original on 15 January 2016. Retrieved 25 October 2015. 
  9. ^ "Semi Radradra Vai Toutai Inspire Electric Eels to Win Over Warriors". Dailytelegraph.com.au. Retrieved 2015-10-25. 
  10. ^ Daniel Lane (2014-05-29). "Semi Radradra too valuable for Eels to lose, says Ken Sio". Smh.com.au. Retrieved 2015-10-25. 
  11. ^ "Gutsy Samoa Secures Place in Four Nations Tournament". Dailytelegraph.com.au. Retrieved 2015-10-25. 
  12. ^ "Semi Radradra Agrees to Four Year Deal with Parramatta Eels". Dailytelegraph.com.au. Retrieved 2015-10-25. 
  13. ^ Michael Carayannis. "Dally M 2014: Johnathan Thurston, Jarryd Hayne named first joint winners". Smh.com.au. Retrieved 2015-10-25. 
  14. ^ "EELS NAME 2015 NINES SQUAD". Rugby League Week. 26 January 2015. Archived from the original on 7 July 2015. Retrieved 25 October 2015. 
  15. ^ "Anthony Watmough in the Thick of it as Parramatta Thrash Manly 42-12". Dailytelegraph.com.au. Retrieved 2015-10-25. 
  16. ^ "Semi Radradra Looms as Eric Grothe Reincarnate After Try Scoring Feats". Foxsports.com.au. Retrieved 2015-12-25. 
  17. ^ "Parramatta Eels winger Semi Radradra bags another double in rout of Wests Tigers". Stuff.co.nz. 2015-07-07. Retrieved 2015-12-25. 
  18. ^ "Semi Radradra Breaks Dteve Ella's Eels Points Coring Record". The Australian. Retrieved 2015-12-25. 
  19. ^ "Raiders steal golden point victory". NRL.com. 2015-09-06. Retrieved 2015-12-25. 
  20. ^ "Dally M 2015 : Every Award Winner Including Team of the Year". Dailytelegraph.com.au. Retrieved 2015-12-25. 
  21. ^ "Eels name 2016 Nines squad". Rugby League Week. Archived from the original on 4 February 2016. Retrieved 1 February 2016. 
  22. ^ "Teams named for NRL All Stars match". NRL.com. 2015-12-15. Retrieved 2016-02-13. 
  23. ^ "World All Stars defeat Indigenous All Stars 12-8 at Suncorp Stadium". Dailytelegraph.com.au. 2016-02-13. Retrieved 2016-02-16. 
  24. ^ "World All Stars beat Indigenous All Stars 12-8 at Lang Park as ARL Commission chairman John Grant confirms clash's future - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)". Abc.net.au. Retrieved 2016-02-13. 
  25. ^ Brad Walter (2016-05-02). "Why Semi Radradra believes playing for Australia will make him a hero in Fiji". Smh.com.au. Retrieved 2016-05-07. 
  26. ^ "Parramatta Eels' Semi Radradra dismisses reports he wants to leave NRL over State of Origin eligibility". ABC. 2016-03-25. Retrieved 2016-05-07. 
  27. ^ Daniel Lane. "Australia coach Mal Meninga says Fijian flier Semi Radradra is a true blue Kangaroo". Smh.com.au. Retrieved 2016-05-07. 
  28. ^ "UPDATED: Representative Round team lists". NRL.com. 28 February 2016. Archived from the original on 4 June 2016. Retrieved 7 May 2016. 
  29. ^ "Australian Kangaroos debutant Semi Radradra sin binned six minutes into Test v New Zealand Kiwis". Fox Sports. 6 May 2016. Retrieved 2016-05-07. 
  30. ^ Press, Australian Associated (30 June 2016). "Semi Radradra taken into custody after domestic violence allegations" – via The Guardian. 
  31. ^ "NRL 2016: Eels winger Semi Radradra has leave extended by Parramatta". 29 June 2016. 
  32. ^ "Report, pictures: PM's XIII smashes PNG". 
  33. ^ "Andrew Fifita and Semi Radradra overlooked by Roos due to off-field problems". stuff.co.nz. 
  34. ^ "NRL: Dragons v Eels score result, Michael Jennings, Semi Radradra". 12 March 2017. 
  35. ^ http://www.couriermail.com.au/sport/nrl/teams/eels/semi-radrada-scores-four-tries-as-parramatta-beat-brisbane-5234-at-suncorp-stadium/news-story/f62220b7df3254dc8790a96ccb232e76
  36. ^ http://www.smh.com.au/rugby-league/league-match-report/paramatta-eels-winger-semi-radradras-hattrick-seals-topfour-spot-against-south-sydney-rabbitohs-20170901-gy9b5f.html
  37. ^ http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/sport/nrl/eels-v-cowboys-parramattas-rampaging-winger-semi-radradra-finishes-up-in-the-nrl/news-story/f9896d72d38775400906246311a693c1
  38. ^ http://www.rugbyleagueproject.org/matches/Custom/Ny0xNjk2LTQtLS0tLS0yMDU3NS0tLS0tLS0tLS0tLS0=
  39. ^ "Eels star Semi Radradra signs with French rugby club Toulon". The Sydney Morning Herald. 28 November 2016. 
  40. ^ "Semi Radradra to leave Parramatta Eels for French rugby union after 2017 NRL season". ABC. 11 January 2017. 
  41. ^ "Semi Radradra makes impressive rugby debut for Toulon in French Top 14". Fox Sports Australia. 9 October 2017. 
  42. ^ "Radradra pulls off huge hit in debut for Toulon". Yahoo7. 9 October 2017. 
  43. ^ "Former NRL star Semi Radradra scores first rugby union try for Toulon". Fox Sports Australia. 23 October 2017. 
  44. ^ "WATCH: Radradra scores sensational first try with first touch". Sporting News. 21 October 2017. 
  45. ^ "Semi Radradra to stay in France". The Australian. 3 February 2018. 
  46. ^ "NRL 2018: Semi Radradra signs new French rugby deal". The Sydney Morning Herald. 2 February 2018. 
  47. ^ "Semi Radradra selected in Barbarians to play England at Twickenham". The Daily Telegraph. 21 May 2018. 
  48. ^ "England vs. Barbarians". BBC Sport. 27 May 2018. 
  49. ^ "England left 'shocked' by Barbarians after suffering record defeat against side who trained three times all week". The Independent. 27 May 2018. 
  50. ^ "Ex-NRL sensation Semi Radradra set to make Flying Fijian debut after being named in John McKee's squad for Pacific Nations Cup". Fox Sports Australia. 11 May 2018. 
  51. ^ "Sport: Semi Radradra named in Fiji 7s team for London". Radio New Zealand. 2 June 2018. 
  52. ^ "Fiji Sevens move closer to World Rugby Sevens Series Title after London success". Sky Sports. 3 June 2018. 
  53. ^ "London Sevens: Fiji takes command of series with victory over South Africa". CNN. 3 June 2018. 
  54. ^ "London Sevens title broadens smile on faces of in-form Fiji". The Telegraph. 3 June 2018. 
  55. ^ "Eric Grothe Predicts Semi Radradra Will Bounce Back Quick From Injury". Daily Telegraph. 17 March 2015. 
  56. ^ Kembrey, Melanie (2017-02-13). "Eels star Semi Radradra pushed partner into wall causing her to black out: court". Brisbane Times. Retrieved 2017-02-13. 
  57. ^ Hook, Chris (2 May 2017). "NRL star Semi Radradra faces court on domestic violence charges". Daily Telegraph. 
  58. ^ http://www.news.com.au/sport/nrl/erin-molan-at-centre-of-fresh-attack-over-public-comments-about-nrl-stars/news-story/edabcda68d1e606dbef6a5c146fe2d20
  59. ^ http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4468368/Erin-Molan-slammed-online-comments-Semi-Radradra.html

External links

  • Parramatta Eels profile
  • NRL profile
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