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Fatiaki relishes new campaign
12:00pm Thursday 19th July 2012 in Sport
FIJI international Ravai Fatiaki has spoken of his excitement ahead of his second season at Worcester Warriors — insisting he has now settled into life the other side of the globe so he can truly make his mark on the Aviva Premiership.
Fatiaki joined Warriors at the mid-point of last season and the big-hitting centre made an eye-catching impression on fans and the coaching staff alike before earning a longer term deal.
The popular Islander made nine first-team appearances, following the completion of the World Cup, and made his first Premiership start to rave reviews from head coach Richard Hill on the final day of the campaign against Northampton Saints.
The 25-year-old concedes he took time to settle into life at Sixways . But he now regards Worcester — alongside wife Kelera and baby daughter Ateca — as home and is keen to make a big impression in the forthcoming season.
Fatiaki said: “I had a good summer and got to see the family back in Fiji, but now I am back and settled in well with my wife and daughter and keen to make a bigger impression this year.
“Everything was new for me in the first season, it was my first contract and getting my family and wife here was all new. It was a good experience for me.
“Now I know the club well and it is about focussing on what to do and getting it right on the pitch.”
Fatiaki had a number of highlights during his first season — notably the day he came face-to-face with not only Ospreys in the LV= Cup but also snow!
“That was a strange day. When I was on the field I was thinking of Fiji,” he laughed.
“I’ve never known my hands go numb before, it was a first. That was my first snow so I enjoyed it… and we won so that was important too.”
This season he faces increased competition with new signings Josh Matavesi and Jon Clarke adding to the midfield options at Warriors alongside the likes of Scotland international Alex Grove and rising star Andy Short.
Fatiaki, though, believes the benefit of a full pre-season at Sixways — after missing out last year due to international commitments — will be of huge benefit to him.
“It has been good that I have been here for pre-season this year, it makes a big difference,” he added. “I can train and get stronger and fitter. I hope I will go well this season because of that.
“It is difficult to get into the team, especially with all those good players. People like Jon Clarke and Josh Matavesi are new and are very good players. But I will do my best and push for a jersey every week.”