National

PM’s rugby chat lands on Fijian shores

By AAP Newswire

From a construction site in the blistering Fijian sun to an official diplomatic lunch and even federal parliament's chambers - there's no place immune from the prime minister's rugby chat.

Scott Morrison switched between the two codes during his quick stint in Fiji, flirting with both league and union quips while meeting leaders.

Fiji's loss to Wales in the Rugby World Cup in Japan was one of the first things Mr Morrison spoke to the Fijian leader about, ahead of their official meeting.

"It came down to the wire," Fiji's Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama told Mr Morrison of his nation's defeat.

The topic came up again about half an hour later when the leaders sat ready for a working lunch along with key ministers.

"Commiserations on the early departure in the Rugby World Cup," Mr Morrison said shortly before media were ejected from the room.

"We will now play on in Fiji's honour."

The rugby theme continued - to league - for the first ever matches between an Australian and Fijian PM's XIII men's and women's teams.

Mr Morrison arrived at the stadium in Suva having ditched the suit for an Australian rugby league polo shirt, before also kicking off his shoes at one point to be the waterboy for his men's team.

The Australians won both games, but stood in a circle, arms-over-shoulders- with their rival team after each game for a Fijian gospel and prayer.

The rugby chat lingered through to Saturday, rearing its head as Mr Morrison had an update on the Blackrock military training camp construction site near Nadi.

The training site's gym was the perfect segue.

"(It's) so the next prime minister's XIII will beat you," Mr Morrison was told, to hearty laughter.

Mr Morrison was right at home using rugby chat to forge connections.

After all, the Cronulla Sharks die-hard once wrapped up parliament's Question Time with a: "Go Sharkies".