The National – Tuesday, November 30, 2010
THE first contingent of Oceania champions MRDC Hekari United FC left Port Moresby yesterday for the FIFA Club World Cup in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, starting next Wednesday via Singapore yesterday.
They included Fijian duo Alvin Singh, Malakai Tiwa, Solomon Islander Benjamin Mela and Ian Yanum and Erickson Komeng from Papua New Guinea with team officials Sailosi Druma, Tommy Mana and Seamus Martens.
Other officials left in the afternoon flight transitting through Sydney while the rest of the contingent will be leaving today.
Hekari will be spending some time in Qatar where they will play a friendly match before heading to Abu Dhabi for the first and crucial match against the home side, Al Wahda FC, a hurdle which they must overcome to proceed to the next round against some of the world’s top clubs.
They have created history by becoming the first team outside Australia and New Zealand to break their dominance through an aggregate 4-2 win over New Zealand’s Waitakere United early this year.
Key players noted for Hekari’s stronghold include captain David Muta, his Papua New Guinea compatriot Kema Jack, the evasive Henry Fa’arodo and Gideon Omokirio both from the Solomon Islands and Fijian imports Pita Bolatoga, Tuimasi Manuca, Singh and Tiwa.