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Tribute to MND victim Tinus Linee

Monday, September 02, 2013

Rupeni Caucaunibuca playing well after returning to the ITM Cup

If you hadn't heard yet, the legendary Rupeni Caucau is back playing where it all started for him, at Northland in New Zealand provincial rugby. He has had two outings for the Taniwha, and showed glimpses of his brilliance on both occasions.

Back in New Zealand after a fairly low key stint at Toulouse in France, Caucau is looking and feeling in better shape that he has for a while. He's reportedly weighing in at just 108kg, and still has elements of that explosive acceleration that made him one of the most lethal finishers in the game.

He missed the opening round of the ITM Cup but in week two he played on the wing against Southland, and as you can see at the beginning of this video, he almost set up two tries, had it not been for some good defence and an unfortunate forward pass.

Against North Harbour this past weekend he combined with the brilliant Rene Ranger, who yet again showed what an incredible player he is all over the park. Ranger made the turnover, then set off after a quick tap and gave 33-year-old Caucau an easy stroll in from 60m out.

His second important touch was part of a lovely Northland try that was finished by their speedy fullback Whiria Meltzer. A neat little offload in the tackle followed, and late in the first half he scored his second try with some trademark power, balance and acceleration.

Northland and North Harbour drew 33-33 after a tense finish that included a sending off and a sin-binning. We'll follow Rupeni's progress and keep you updated throughout the season.

The Crowd Goes Wild spoke to him a few weeks back, touching on how good he feels physically, as well as featuring some classic clips of him in action. You can view that on page two

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Posted at 9:26 am | 14 comments

Rupeni Caucau try and nice assist against Clermont

Rupeni Caucau's butchered try for Toulouse

Rupeni Caucau's wonder try for Toulouse against Brive

Rupeni Caucaunibuca's two tries for Agen against Narbonne

Rupeni Caucau is back - Hatrick vs Toulon

Rupeni Caucaunibuca try vs Scotland at 2003 RWC

Rupeni Caucaunibuca at his best vs the Brumbies in 2003

Viewing 14 comments

UpTheLowEnd September 02, 2013 11:22 am

Great to see an awesome player back in action! Questionable interviewer though... didn't take much away from that.

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JV September 02, 2013 11:27 am

The Bua Bullet is BACK! BOOM!

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Ed September 02, 2013 11:34 am

Only with Caucau could 108kg be prefixed with "only"... The man is still an absolute monster

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Benny September 02, 2013 11:45 am

Looked like an exciting game considering it was between two average teams and ended in a draw

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ruckinmaul September 02, 2013 12:08 pm

One hell of a game. Frantic stuff. I actually watch the game because of Rupeni's presence. one comment though on Francis Saili, he is a great player but sometimes his decision making is really poor, kicking aimlessly, passing badly. I reckon there are 3 forward passes he made during the game. He need to stop doing all those stuff and he will be great for Allblacks.

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Canadian content September 02, 2013 1:01 pm

Uhh, doubt that since he's previously played for Fiji.

He may frustrate a coach sometimes, but I suppose maybe ranger would too (maybe my favorite player now).

One thing I noticed was how small looked in his hands. Like a child's toy, no wonder the game seems so easy to him

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Akuma75 September 02, 2013 1:48 pm

Outstanding player.
He used to play for a couple of team in europe. (agen and Toulouse.)
But he seems to be quite lost there.

It's a good thing to see him back on the field and smiling.

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stroudos September 02, 2013 5:00 pm

Call me old-fashioned but I still can't get used to the use of the word "just" in this sentence when describing a wing: "He's reportedly weighing in at just 108kg"

Absolutely delighted to see Caucau back in action. He remains the most exciting player I've ever watched. These Fijian blokes seem to age like wine, so it's quite plausible if he can keep his head straight he could get right to the very top again.

Maybe we'll see him in England for the 2015 world cup!? I certainly hope so.

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ruckinmaul September 03, 2013 8:24 am

I think RD use the word 'just' to justify that he is loosing some of his weight, and training harder than before, putting lots of commitment nowadays.

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stroudos September 03, 2013 1:00 pm

Yeah, I get it, I was just being ironical.


^^^(and again)^^^

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CD September 02, 2013 6:05 pm

Such a wasted talent! Had he stayed off the fags and doughnuts, he could have easily been one of the all-time greats. Shame they were just too tasty.

I hope he can give us a couple of seasons to enjoy before he finishes his career.

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MunsterFan September 03, 2013 5:03 pm

What a legend, so much talent. My favorite player of all time! "the rest of em are just dinosaurs"

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JL September 09, 2013 11:40 pm

Caucau for super rugby!!!!!!!! come on blues bring himback!!!!! freaking awesome watching him play!!!!!

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