Fijians should learn to honour the deal they signed to play rugby with clubs overseas.
The clubs are their employers as they pay their wages for their daily bread and butter, so to speak.
For so many times our players have been in the spotlight for the very wrong reasons for their off the field demeanour.
On Tuesday, lock forward Leone Nakarawa dented his somewhat untarnished reputation as a Flying Fijian for the last 10 years when he was suspended by his France Top 14 club, Racing 92.
He was given 15 days timeout by Racing 92 after Fiji’s last pool game against Wales at the Rugby World Cup at Oita, Japan on October 9.
But instead, he turned up on Monday which is almost two weeks late.
Any employer would be fuming with rage for someone who dishonoured the deal signed in good faith.
Nakarawa has been suspended and will know his fate on November 22.
“Racing 92 have provisionally suspended Leone Nakarawa and have summoned him to a preliminary meeting before an eventual sanction,” the Top 14 outfit said.
The 61-time international was absent from group training with Racing on Tuesday ahead of this weekend’s European Champions Cup match against title holders Saracens.
Last month we highlighted Rupeni Caucaunibuca story who ended up broke and advised other rugby not be like him.
The former Blues winger was one of the stars of the 2003 RWC and signed mega-deals to play in France which should have set him up for life.
But throughout his career, there were instances where he would disappear for weeks, with no one knowing where he was.
“I just the money for nothing. I spent it on drinking and helping people,” Caucaunibuca said on the Oceans Apart documentary.
“I regret it. I should have kept a few hundred thousand for after rugby. But it’s too late, I’ve already spent it all, for nothing.”
Now aged 38, he also hopes that players put something away for life after rugby.
Meanwhile, an association for Fijian players in France called Solidarité Enfance Fidjienne (SEF) was set up to help address issues that were previously disregarded.
Former national rep Julian Vulakoro and SEF secretary once said after one of their meetings:
“The main reason for this association is to help out in making people that are here in France especially the young ones understand the purpose of being here.
“We address issues in a way that they understand, the sacrifices that people have made for them to be where they are today and most importantly the hardships that parents go through in putting them through school – making sure they have a good meal, uniforms and so forth.”
Players must learn to respect their employers and honour the deal. They are the ones who will benefit from it and enjoy life after rugby.
Edited by Leone Cabenatabua