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Storm arrive for special week in Fiji

Melbourne Storm players and staff received a heroes welcome after touching down at Fiji Airport yesterday ahead of the club’s historic trial match against the Newcastle Knights on Saturday. 

Greeted by a traditional Fijian welcome featuring local dancers, Storm captain Harry Grant said the chance to play in Fiji was an occasion that meant a lot to the broader playing group. 

“It was a very warm welcome, it’s very special for us to be over here playing,” Grant said. 

“We have very strong Fijian ties within our club so it’s about soaking in the culture this week but also keeping in the back of the mind we’ve got a game to play,” he said. 

The Melbourne Storm captain said while he’s eager to learn more about Fijian culture, he’s equally excited to run out for the first time in 2024. 

"At the moment we've been ripping into pre-season training and we've been screaming out for a game so we're looking forward to it.” 

Meanwhile, Fijian Bati captain Tui Kamikamica said the opportunity to return to his homeland and play an NRL trial is something that has been 12 years in the making. 

“Especially for myself, growing up in Fiji we love rugby, so to come back to my homeland is such an awesome feeling" Kamikamica said. 

“I can’t wait to play in front of family and friends, last time I played in front of them was 12 years ago so it’s been a long time coming,” he said. 

“It’s such a huge occasion...once it got announced last year I couldn't take the smile off my face,” he said. 

“Every time I come back to Fiji I get to see the smiles on the kid’s faces and now they get to see all the superstars...all the big names in the league,” he said. 

The club has a strong history of players with Fijian heritage making an impact at the club, Tariq Sims, Isaac Lumelume, Suliasi Vunivalu, Marika Koroibete, Sisa Waqa, Semi Tadulala, Aseri Laing and Kamikamica all pulling on the purple jersey.  

Waqa, Koroibete and Vunivalu in particular left a lasting impression on the club, the Fijian flyers scoring a combined total of over 150 tries for the club. 

Melbourne Storm's second trial match of the season will kick off at 1:45pm on Saturday, broadcast live on Fox League and Kayo. 

Photo credit: Fiji Sun Waisea Nasokia

Acknowledgement of Country

Melbourne Storm respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.