Glasgow Warriors winger Ratu Tagive is itching to get back to rugby after signing a two year contract extension at Scotstoun – but admitted he is feeling lucky to secure is future in these uncertain times.
Tagive will remain a Warrior until at least 2022 after fruitful talks with incoming head coach Danny Wilson.
While sport stays suspended and the players unable to train or socialise during the Covid-19 health crisis, Tagive said the Glasgow squad were staying in touch and keeping up each other’s spirits through a time that would usually see them competing for Pro 14 and European honours.
Tagive said: “I am pretty lucky to have got this [contract] done before the whole situation got this serious.
“It’s crazy, unprecedented really. The guys are just keeping in touch how you would expect – group chats and things like that.
“You miss seeing the guys for coffees and getting out on the grass together but in other ways we’ve also gotten to take time for each other and get to know each other a bit better too.
“But I can’t wait to get back out there again – and see the state that some of them have gotten into while they’ve been in lockdown!”
While the 28-year-old trains as much as he can from home he is reflecting on a journey that saw him nearly give up rugby to resume his university studies in Canberra,
After leaving his native Australia four years ago, Tagive is thankful that he took a chance on his new life in Scotland, and was even part of Gregor Townsend’s national team squad for the Six Nations after qualifying through residency.
It also put him in closer contact with future Warriors boss Wilson, who has been assistant coach to Townsend since 2018.
Asked if Wilson was the driving force behind the new deal, Tagive said: “Yeah, he was the first one to touch base with me.
“Obviously I wasn’t too involved with him at international camp as he works with the forwards.
“I guess a mark of someone is how much they’ll be missed when they move on and everyone [in Scotland camp] says that about Danny.
“It is the same sort of thing at Warriors with Dave Rennie. You are happy for him to be moving on but you know he will be missed.”
The Pro 14 is currently suspended but could be completed later this year if organisers if public health authorities and governments give sport the green light to resume.
That could see Glasgow fighting for a championship play-off berth before the delayed conclusion to the Six Nations, which will see Scotland face Wales in Cardiff on a date yet to be decided.
But with so much still up in the air, Tagive took a philosophical look at his goals for the coming months.
He said: “I try not to look too far ahead, I look at blocks of games.
“I’ve not had much game time for one reason or another – injuries, and then being part of the Scotland set up.
“I’ll just look to compete with a really strong set of backs that we’ve got here and then if all goes well hopefully get myself back into the national squad again too.”