Suliasi Vunivalu

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Suliasi Vunivalu
Suliasivunivalu.jpg
Vunivalu playing for the Storm in 2014.
Personal information
Born (1995-11-27) 27 November 1995 (age 23)
Suva, Fiji[1]
Height 192 cm (6 ft 4 in)
Weight 99 kg (15 st 8 lb)
Playing information
Position Wing
Club
Years Team Pld T G FG P
2016– Melbourne Storm 70 61 0 0 244
Representative
Years Team Pld T G FG P
2017–18 Fiji 7 10 1 0 42
As of 8 September 2018
Source: [2][3]

Suliasi Vunivalu (born 27 November 1995) is a Fijian professional rugby league footballer who plays for the Melbourne Storm in the National Rugby League. A Fiji international representative, he plays on the wing.

Early life

Born in Suva, Fiji, Vunivalu grew up in the province of Bua and was educated at Lelean Memorial School.[5] He moved to Auckland, New Zealand at the age of 16[1] and played rugby union for Saint Kentigern College.

Playing career

Early career

When Vunivalu turned 17, he made the Blues development team after impressing in schoolboy rugby. He was then signed by the Melbourne Storm at 18 years old.[6] In 2014 and 2015, he played for the Melbourne Storm's NYC team.[7]

2016

Vunivalu graduated to the Storm's Queensland Cup team, Eastern Suburbs Tigers.[8] In Round 7, he made his NRL debut for the Storm against the Wests Tigers,[9][10] scoring two tries on debut.[11] He went on to score doubles in his second, third, fifth and eighth games also,[12][13] gaining top position on the club's try-scorers list for the 2016 season. On 3 September, he set the record for most tries in a debut season record by scoring his 22nd try of the season against the Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks, eclipsing the previous record of 21 tries set by Israel Folau back in 2007. He was also the top-try scorer of the season. On 2 October, he played in the 2016 NRL Grand Final loss against Sharks.[14]

2017

Early in the season, Suliasi was selected for his Fiji Bati international debut at the Pacific Rugby League Test against Tonga, played at the Campbelltown Stadium in Sydney on 6 May.[15] On 31 August, Vunivalu extended his contract with the Storm until the end of the 2020 season.[16] He was part of the Melbourne Storm's premiership winning team against the North Queensland Cowboys in the 2017 NRL Grand Final.[17] Vunivalu was selected in the Fiji 24-man squad for the 2017 Rugby League World Cup.[18] On 28 October in the 2017 Rugby League World Cup, he scored 2 tries in the 58-12 win over the Hawks at 1300SMILES Stadium. On 5 November, Vunivalu scored his hatrick tries in the record scored of 72-6 win over Wales at 1300SMILES Stadium. On 10 November, he scored his second hatrick of tries in the 60th minute mark after beating Italy in the 38-10 win at Canberra Stadium. After the Bati reached the semi-final, he was nominated for the Rugby League World Golden Boot Award, which was won by Storm teammate Cameron Smith.

2018

On 16 February 2018, Vunivalu played in the 2018 World Club Challenge victory over the Leeds Rhinos, scoring a try. Vunivalu repainted Fiji Bati in the 2018 Pacific Rugby League Tests. He played in the 2018 NRL Grand Final.

Honours

Individual

Club

References

  1. ^ a b NRL. "Vunivalu becomes #171 - Storm". Melbournestorm.com.au. Retrieved 2016-04-17.
  2. ^ "Suliasi Vunivalu - Career Stats & Summary". Rugby League Project. Retrieved 2016-04-28.
  3. ^ loverugbyleague
  4. ^ "Meet Suli Vunivalu". NRL. Retrieved 29 November 2017.
  5. ^ Baleilevuka, Rusiate (21 January 2015). "Vanivalu signs with Melbourne Storm". Fiji Village. Retrieved 15 January 2016.
  6. ^ Raj, Amit (18 December 2014). "Suliasi to join Bati star". Fiji Times. Retrieved 15 January 2015.
  7. ^ "V". Nyc Database. Retrieved 2016-04-17.
  8. ^ NRL. "Rd.2 Feeder Team Announcement - Storm". Melbournestorm.com.au. Retrieved 2016-04-17.
  9. ^ "Updated team lists: Wests Tigers v Storm". NRL.com. 2016-02-28. Retrieved 2016-04-17.
  10. ^ NRL. "Late mail: Round 7 - Storm". Melbournestorm.com.au. Retrieved 2016-04-17.
  11. ^ "Storm clinch golden point victory". NRL.com. 2016-02-28. Retrieved 2016-04-17.
  12. ^ "Warriors suffer embarrassing 42-0 defeat to Melbourne Storm on Anzac Day". Stuff.co.nz. Retrieved 2016-05-01.
  13. ^ "Storm monster Titans in seven-try slaughter". NRL.com. 2016-02-28. Retrieved 2016-05-01.
  14. ^ "NRL Team Lists". Nrl.com. 2016-02-28. Retrieved 2016-10-03.
  15. ^ "Fiji Bati squad for Tonga Test Match". Asia Pacific RL. 1 May 2017. Retrieved 1 May 2017.
  16. ^ Ward, Roy (31 August 2017). "Melbourne Storm re-sign Suliasi Vunivalu, Josh Addo-Carr on multi-year deals". Retrieved 20 October 2017 – via The Sydney Morning Herald.
  17. ^ "Perfect Storm claim 2017 premiership". Retrieved 2 October 2017.
  18. ^ "World Cup squads: Every team, every country". Retrieved 20 October 2017.

External links

  • Melbourne Storm profile
  • 2017 RLWC profile
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