The Mana Whey Fiji Coral Coast 7s tournament took place recently starting on on Thursday 19 January and included some very familiar Auckland referees and an impressive teenage referee.
Auckland referee, Susana Sotutu, alongside other Auckland officials was excited to be part of the tournament that took place at Lawaqa Park, Sigatoka.
The 19 year-old is the niece of former Flying Fijian and Auckland fullback Waisake Sotutu and was welcomed by the local community and excited to be part of the experience.
“I’m excited to be here again this year,” she told SUNsports just prior to the tournament.
“The competition is growing and there will be more excitement building up as well. It is good to see that George Gregan is here and I think the quality is going to be getting better and better each year.”
Sotutu also played rugby before she took up refereeing. This enabled her to learn more about the laws and understand the game better.
Over the past year, she has been given a lot of refereeing appointments by the Auckland Rugby Referees
“My referee career has been good I have just recently transited to Auckland University and so I was refereeing up North, which is a change. So it’s been a good challenge working with the secondary school boys there and I am looking forward to the Coral Coast Sevens this year.”
“I arrived in Fiji two weeks ago and went to Tavea in Bua to visit my family. It’s great to be back here in Fiji especially to meet my relatives.”
She joined other NZ referees like Steve Salton, Paul Van Etten, and Richard Loten, who were also there to officiate in the tournament.
Susana encourages more people to pick up the whistle, so if you want to have the best seat in the house. Simply “Make The Call” and become a referee.
The ARRA would like to The Fiji Sun Online, Waisae Nasokia and Leone Cabenatabua for additional material contributing to this article