BY IRWIN ANGIKI
The Honiara Rugby Union Association (HRUA) has acknowledged its third-year major sponsor SolRice for making this year’s competition possible.
The SolRice Grand Premier Rugby Competition is set to kick off first week of July, ending early October, 2022.
HRUA inked the $145,000 sponsorship deal with SolRice yesterday.
Speaking to Sun SPORTS after signing the deal, HRUA President Mr Brian Taupiri said:
“On behalf of the rugby community and the country as a whole, I would like to wholeheartedly thank and acknowledge SolRice for the continuous support and once again stepping in to sponsoring and making it possible to have another rugby union competition.
“This means a lot for Solomon Islands rugby, SolRice sponsoring this competition which is the elite level competition of rugby in the country.
“Also, very significant that SolRice stands as a partner to HRUA in making and witnessing this historic period where the level of competitive rugby is pushing new heights nationally.
“SolRice is on its third year as the major sponsor of our annual rugby union competition, and we recognise and praise SolRice Head of Office James Bradford and his team for giving back to the community by way of sponsoring big events such as this.
“Raising the bar in terms of prizes has yielded much improvement in the standard of competitive rugby in the country, the standard of rugby competition has been raised, which has also seen a raise in the standard of players and teams.
“The signed deal sees SolRice donating $145,000 in total towards this sponsorship of the awards.
“Last year it was also the major sponsor for the Premier Division. The year before last, SolRice started off the consolation prizes initiative with individual players and teams, which since then has been a big highlight in the competition awards.”
James Bradford, SolRice Head of Solomons Office, after the signing, said he is pleased to see the improving level of rugby in the country and with SolRice being part of this development.
This huge and positive impact has given SolRice confidence to continue supporting HRUA with its annual rugby competition this year.
“SolRice as a business is always very keen to support sports and sports development in the country, both men’s and women’s sport.
“And, we’ve seen the level of rugby in the country improving year on year. Last year was extremely successful, and we see the 2022 season stepping up again from that.
“And, it will place the country in a very good stand point for 2023 Games.
“We wish all the rugby players and their officials all the best for the season.”
The grand finale is expected early October.
Eleven teams will tough it out for the first prize – a whopping $50,000. Second gets $35,000. Third $25,000, and fourth $15,000.
2021 champions Avaiki returns to defend against 2021 runner-up Matangiki, HammerHeads, Bridge 15s, Islanders, Crusaders, LuaPel, SOSA, Tia Warriors, Police and Diesel.
More than 10 consolation prizes are on offer.
And, the popular man of the match prize continues, now with an additional shirt to serve as memorabilia for the recipients. Taupiri however says for this year, unlike 2021, the man of the match awards will only apply in the play-off stage.
Games will be played at the home of rugby – SIRUF Townground Rugby Stadium.