Category Archives: Samoa

Abundance of resources

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Wallaby number 8 Isi Naisarani wins a lineout against the Springboks in Johannesburg. Photo: AFP

The recent debut of three Fijians in separate Tier One nation teams has highlighted the fact that the Fiji Rugby Union is sitting on a wealth of resources that if tapped dilligently and frugally will bring dividends in abundance. Continue reading

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Filed under Australia, Bledisloe Cup, Fiji Rugby Union, France, French Club, HSBC Sevens World Series, Manu Samoa, New Zealand, PNC, Rio de Janeiro, Rugby World Cup, Samoa, South Africa, Springboks, Super Rugby, Tonga, Top 14, Wallabies

Eden Park Dress Rehearsal

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Loose forward Semi Kunatani is gang tackled by Manu Samoa players in the final PNC match in Suva. Photo: Zoom Fiji

The dress rehearsal at Eden Park in Auckland on August 31 will be the final stretch for the Flying Fijians to test their set pieces in the match against a strong Ikale Tahi Tongan side.

The inconsistencies in the lineouts and the scrums throughout the past five matches; two Maori and three Pacific Nations Cup games, will finally provide an indication of how the team will fare in the Rugby World Cup.

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Filed under Fiji, Flying Fijians, Manu Samoa, Maori All Blacks, Pacific Nations Cup, Rugby World Cup, Samoa, Tonga, William Webb-Ellis Cup

Fiji or Japan to win 2019 RWC

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The Brave Blossoms celebrate after upsetting the Springboks in the 2015 Rugby World Cup. Photo: Getty Images

 

Just like the violent tsunami that hit Kamaishi, the aftereffects of the 2011 great Sendai 9.1 earthquake, a Tier 2 nation will win the Japanese Rugby World Cup after the final at the International Stadium in Yokohama on November 2.

Either hosts Japan or Fiji will win the number IX showcase event after Tier One nations New Zealand, Australia, South Africa and England dominated proceedings in the past eight tournaments.

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Filed under All Blacks, Argentina, Australia, England, Fiji, Flying Fijians, Japan, Opinion, Pacific Nations Cup, Rugby World Cup, Samoa, Scotland, South Africa, Springboks, Wales, Wallabies

Beware, the Kamaishi resurgence factor

Members of the Flying Fijians need to have their eyes wide open in their first match against Japan in the World Rugby Pacific Nations Cup on Saturday.

The Kamaishi Recovery Memorial Stadium . . . named after the town's recovery from the 2011 tsunami that destroyed most of the area. Photo: World Rugby

The Kamaishi Recovery Memorial Stadium where the match has been scheduled is the same venue for the Flying Fijians second assignment in the Rugby World Cup against Uruguay on September 25. Continue reading

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Filed under Canada, Fiji, Fiji Rugby Union, Flying Fijians, Focus on rwc, Japan, Manu Samoa, Pacific Nations Cup, Rugby World Cup, Samoa, Tonga, USA, World Rugby Pacific Nations Cup

Island teams look all set to jet home early

Tonga's hopes of moving to the knock out stage of the competition was snuffed out by the Argentines. Photo: Planet Rugby

Tonga’s hopes of moving to the knock out stage of the competition was snuffed out by Argentina. Photo: Planet Rugby

All three Pacific island teams look set to make an early exit from the 2015 Rugby World Cup after mediocre performances for the first three weeks of the competition.

Fiji after being crowned the World Rugby Pacific Nations Cup champions in August lost all of their first three matches against England, Australia and Wales before winning their last match against Uruguay.

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Filed under Fiji, Rugby World Cup, Samoa, Tonga

Census Johnston called up by Samoa for World Cup

Census Johnston gets call up to play for Samoa in RWC. Photo: Getty Images

Census Johnston gets call up to play for Samoa in RWC. Photo: Getty Images

Census Johnston has been called up to Samoa’s World Cup squad after Leicester’s Logovi’i Mulipola was forced to pull out through injury.

The 34-year-old signed a contract extension at Toulouse before calling time on his international career in April, with reports suggesting he came to the decision in a bid to safeguard his future at the French club.

However, he then changed his mind to play in the historic Test against New Zealand on July 8, when the All Blacks made their first appearance in Samoa.

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Fiji claim Pacific Nations Cup 2015 crown

Fiji celebrates 39-29 win against Manu Samoa in PNC final in British Columbia. Photo: World Rugby

Fiji celebrates 39-29 win against Manu Samoa in PNC final in British Columbia. Photo: World Rugby

Fiji sent out a Rugby World Cup warning to their Pool A rivals England, Australia, Wales and Uruguay after a ruthless display of finishing saw them claim the Pacific Nations Cup 2015 title at the expense of rivals Samoa.

Fiji defeated Samoa 39-29 in a thrilling final at the Swangard Stadium in Burnaby to claim their second Pacific Nations Cup crown and head into RWC 2015 full of confidence

Second-rower Leone Nakawara grabbed two of his side’s five tries with the others coming from influential scrum-half Niko Matawalu, Kini Murimurivalu and Akapusi Qera in a see-saw contest that saw Fiji race into a 17-3 lead before being reeled back in by Samoa. But just as the physical Samoans appeared to have taken control of the contest, Fiji came storming back with three quickfire tries that saw them reclaim the initiative and pull clear.

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Filed under Burnaby, Fiji, Pacific Nations Cup, Prayer, Samoa

Fiji static on world rankings

Fiji's lock Leone nakarawa in full cry against the Tongans at the ANZ Stadium in Suva. Photo: World Rugby

Fiji’s lock Leone Nakarawa in full cry against the Tongans at the ANZ Stadium in Suva. Photo: World Rugby

Fiji’s draw against Samoa at Bonney Field in Sacramento last week, on neutral soil, had only minimal impact on the World Rugby rankings with Samoa losing less than a tenth of a rating point and Fiji gaining the same.

This means the two Pacific Island rivals are now separated by only 0.55 points going into the final round of pool matches on Wednesday. Fiji is in tenth position behind Samoa who is ahead in the ninth spot.

The only way Fiji could beat their Pacific Island neighbor in the world rankings is to make it to the finals and beat Samoa in that match that is scheduled for Monday at the Swanguard Stadium in Burnaby, east of Vancouver, British Columbia.

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Samoa fight back to draw with Fiji

Gabriele Lovobalavu attacks against Samoa. Photo: World Rugby

Gabiriele Lovobalavu attacks against Samoa. Photo: World Rugby

A late penalty from Patrick Faapale gave Samoa a 30-30 draw against Fiji after they battled back in the Pacific Nations Cup.

The game in Sacramento looked to be heading Fiji’s way when they led 27-10, but just as they did against the Maori All Blacks, the Flying Fijians ran out of steam in the second half.

First-half tries from Leone Nakarawa, twice, and Metuisela Talebula gave Fiji a 17-10 lead at the break, with Paul Perez crossing for Samoa.

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Filed under Fiji, Pacific Nations Cup, Samoa

Fiji wants to end Samoa’s reign

Manu Samoa perform the Siva Tau against the All Blacks in Apia. Photo: Planet Rugby

Manu Samoa perform the Siva Tau against the All Blacks in Apia. Photo: Planet Rugby

In their quest to end Samoa’s three-year rugby dominance, the Vodafone Flying Fijians will be making some changes to the team that defeated Tonga last week in this weekend’s PNC encounter against their Pacific rugby rival.

Fiji last defeated Samoa 36-18 at the 2011 PNC in Suva before Samoa dominated the show for the following three years defeating Fiji 27-7 at the 2011 RWC, 29-26 at the 2012 PNC in Japan and 18-13 in Suva last year.

Head coach John McKee said his team needed to lift their defensive game to counter the fiery Samoans.

“This will be another hard physical battle,” he said.

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Filed under Bonney Field Sacramento, Fiji, Fiji Times, John McKee, Pacific Nations Cup, Samoa