Rising Jet to keep eye on brothers
WHEN the Brumbies take on the Reds in the Super 14 tomorrow night, Ipswich Jet Vili Fainga’a will be watching more closely than most.
The two older brothers Vili shares a house with, Queensland Reds twins Saia and Anthony, will go up against his little brother, Brumbies flanker Colby.
Vili’s allegiances are clear.
“I just go for my brothers,” he said.
“I don’t watch any other players on the field, so I can give them feedback.”
Vili admits a soft spot for the Reds, however.
“I definitely hope the Reds win,” he said at the risk of upsetting his little brother.
“Last year they were rubbish, this year their brand of footy is exciting.
“They’re just playing so well.”
Colby made his starting debut in the Brumbies’ loss to the NSW Waratahs last weekend but Vili, himself a flanker at high school in the ACT, was impressed by his little bro.
“I thought he played really well,” Vili said.
“He did everything he needed to do.
“He was good at the clean-out.”
While Saia and Anthony have reached new heights with the Reds, Vili believes the Brumbies is the best environment for Colby to improve in.
“It is probably the best thing for him down there, learning off (Wallaby back rowers) Stephen Hoiles, George Smith and Rocky Elsom,” Vili said.
“It is a superstar team there and George Smith is the man.”
Even though he has played rugby league since leaving high school, Vili was able to pass on some words of wisdom to Colby before the game.
“I said ‘just relax’ because what he does benefits the team,” Vili said.
“Do what you do best.
“Next week add something to your game and by the end of the season you should be playing your best football.”
While Vili has done well with the Jets, it must be tough watching his little brother succeed at Super 14 level in the position he played. His two older brothers are earning rave reviews for their performances with the Reds.
“I haven’t played union since I was 19,” the 22-year-old said.
“I loved playing union when I did.
“I wouldn’t turn a blind eye to maybe playing it next year.
“I’ve just got to sort a few things out.”