An Early Christmas Present for us Sale Fans

When I was eight all I wanted for Christmas was a guitar. I have no idea why. I still have no idea why. Even to this day I’ve never felt the urge to even pick one up, let alone learn how to play. However, back then it was top of every Christmas list I wrote. Imagine my joy then, when, on Christmas morning, there under our Christmas tree was a guitar shaped present….

viliami-fihaki-north-harbour_3035319Rugby, unlike football, allows player movement between clubs at any time during the season. For the past month or so rumours have been seculating that we would be getting a new back from forward from the Southern Hemisphere. Who could it be? Kieran Read? Richie McCaw?…

…the tradition in our house at Christmas was that no presents could be opened till after lunch which meant I had to spend the whole morning eyeing this present up, imagining how good it will be to finally get it out of the box and in my hands. As an eight year old I hand no idea who Hendrix, Clapton or Springsteen were but you could bet that within a week I would have mastered all their songs and taken guitar playing as it was known on to a whole new level…

…our new Christmas present is Tongan International Viliami Fihaki. Singed to a three year contract, at 26 years old, 6ft and 17stone, we at Sale should see the best years of his career. Steve Diamond calls him a “really good ball carrier” and with the ability to play 6 as well as 8 he will bring much needed depth and competition to our back row. Type his name into YouTube and you will see his best bits (and hits!). Apparently he comes recommended to us by the same people who spotted Johnny Leota and Dan Braid. Big shoes to fill but if he turns out to be half the player they are the Sale faith full will not be disappointed…

…and so, after all the other presents were handed out it came down to the big one, my guitar. But wait, what’s going on? Why is it being given to my older sister? She didn’t ask for a guitar! Turns out it was her new badminton racket in a slightly big box. I was distraught! I literally went and sat on the stairs and sulked! The music world had lost another star…

…Sale got a look at their new present last week against Harlequins in the LV Cup. It went almost as well as my eighth Christmas, sin-binned ten minutes into his debut for a late tackle! I wonder if he sulked on his step like I did? He won’t be fully unwrapped this week either as he has not been named in the squad to face Worcester. Instead he will be given time to find his feet in the Jets team that face Bath on Monday.

And the moral to this story? You can’t always get what you wish for?, the grass is always greener on the other side? (my sister was actually quite good at badminton!) or I still haven’t got over something that happened twenty nine years ago?

I’ll let you decide. All I hope is that Viliami Fihaki is any good!

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