Pacific Islanders rugby union team

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Pacific Islanders
Pacificislanderrugbylogo.JPG
Union Pacific Islands Rugby Alliance
Fiji Rugby Union
Samoa Rugby Football Union
Tonga Rugby Football Union
Coach(es) Tonga Quddus Fielea
Captain(s) Fiji Moses Rauluni (2008)
Team kit
First match
Queensland Reds 29 - 48 Pacific Islanders
(20 June 2004)
Largest win
NSW Waratahs 21 - 68 Pacific Islanders
(25 June 2004)
Largest defeat
Ireland 61 - 17 Pacific Islanders
(26 November 2006)
Appearances (First in 2006)

The Pacific Islanders is a combined international rugby union team that played from 2004 to 2008. It represented Fiji, Samoa and Tonga; Niue and the Cook Islands also supplied players to the squad for the Pacific Islanders' tour in 2004, despite not being members of the Pacific Tri-Nations competition. The team does not play at Rugby World Cups, where each of the nations represents itself.

History[edit]

Australia/New Zealand 2004[edit]

The Pacific Islands Rugby Alliance (PIRA) was formed in 2003. The coach is appointed by the Islanders board and in turn supported by the national coaches of Fiji, Samoa and Tonga. Its team, the Pacific Islanders, is drawn from the best Fijian, Tongan and Samoan players, and created far more interest on their inaugural 2004 tour than any of the three nations could have hoped to individually. Despite losing every game, 14-29 vs Australia, 26-41 vs New Zealand and 24-38 vs South Africa, they were impressive in all three tests and played full strength teams, something that rarely happens when major nations play Tonga, Fiji or Samoa. The Islanders did, however, beat a Queensland XV 48-29 at Ballymore and NSW Waratahs 68-21 at Aussie Stadium.

Celtic Nations 2006[edit]

The Pacific Islanders before their match against Scotland

As the individual nations were primarily concerned with qualifying for the next World Cup the Islanders did not tour again until 2006. Scheduled matches against Italy and New Zealand in June 2006 did not take place, but they undertook a Northern Hemisphere tour in late 2006 with matches against Scotland, Wales and Ireland. PIRA had ruled in July 2006 that the team selected for that year's tour to Great Britain and Ireland would consist only of players who had previously played for Fiji, Manu Samoa or Tonga. This was intended to ensure that the Pacific Islanders team serves to develop players for the island nations only. Notably, two players on the 2004 tour, Sione Lauaki and Sitiveni Sivivatu (the latter the Islanders' leading scorer on that tour), went on to play for the All Blacks.[1] During that tour, they were the last opponents of Ireland at their traditional home of Lansdowne Road before its redevelopment into a modern all-seater stadium. The Pacific Islanders were beaten in all three matches.

Europe 2008[edit]

In November 2008, the team toured Europe and played Tests against England, France and Italy. The team's manager was Major-General Sitiveni Rabuka, former Prime Minister of Fiji and author of two military coups in 1987.[2] Though it began with two defeats, the tour ended with the Islanders' first ever win over European opposition, with a 25-17 victory in Italy.[3]

Future status[edit]

There was much speculation about what role the Islanders would play in international rugby. Many hoped that they would be admitted into an expanded Super 12 competition or perhaps the Tri Nations. These hopes were dashed when the organisers of the Super 12 and the Tri Nations, SANZAR, opted to expand the Super 14 by adding one team each in Australia and South Africa and add an extra round of fixtures to the Tri Nations without adding any new teams. As of 2006, it appeared they would be similar to the British and Irish Lions but tour every two years instead of four.

Samoa quits PIRA[edit]

The Samoa Rugby Union informed fellow Alliance members Fiji and Tonga that it has decided to quit the alliance because the merged Pacific Island team had failed to produce financial benefits sought by member unions.

"The original concept was basically to provide an opportunity (to play) every two years. There were two aims, to get revenue to help in the running of the activities of the unions (and) to provide players with the opportunity to play against tier one sides.

But the International Rugby Board (IRB) changed the schedule for the Pacific Islands team to play every four years. Every four years won't generate the revenue needed to run our rugby." says SRU Chairman, Peter Schuster.[4]

2008 Squad[edit]

Note: Flags indicate national union affiliation of the registered club as has been defined under WR eligibility rules.

Player Position Club
Samoa Tani Fuga Hooker England Harlequins
Fiji Sunia Koto Hooker England London Welsh
Tonga Aleki Lutui Hooker England Worcester Warriors
Tonga Tonga Lea'aetoa Prop England London Irish
Samoa Census Johnston Prop England Saracens
Samoa Kas Lealamanua Prop France Dax
Tonga Kisi Pulu Prop France Perpignan
Samoa Justin Va'a Prop Scotland Glasgow Warriors
Tonga Paino Hehea Lock France Racing Métro
Fiji Kele Leawere Lock Japan Hino Motors
Samoa Filipo Levi Lock Japan Ricoh Black Rams
Tonga Hale T-Pole Lock Japan Suntory Sungoliath
Tonga Nili Latu (vc) Flanker Japan Green Rockets
Fiji Semisi Naevo Flanker Japan Green Rockets
Samoa George Stowers Flanker Japan Kobelco Steelers
Tonga Viliami Vaki Flanker France Perpignan
Fiji Sisa Koyamaibole Number 8 France Toulon
Tonga Finau Maka Number 8 France Toulouse
Player Position Club
Tonga Sililo Martens Scrum-half England Sale Sharks
Fiji Mosese Rauluni (c) Scrum-half England Saracens
Fiji Seremaia Bai Fly-half France Clermont
Tonga Pierre Hola Fly-half Japan Kobelco Steelers
Samoa Seilala Mapusua Centre England London Irish
Fiji Seru Rabeni Centre England Leicester Tigers
Tonga Epi Taione Centre England Harlequins
Fiji Vilimoni Delasau Wing France Montauban
Fiji Napolioni Nalaga Wing France Clermont
Samoa Sailosi Tagicakibau Wing England London Irish
Fiji Kameli Ratuvou Fullback England Saracens
Samoa Gavin Williams Fullback France Dax
  • Two further players were originally included in the squad Sireli Bobo and Soane Tonga'uiha. However Bobo became unavailable, and Tonga'uiha later withdrew from the tour.

Results[edit]

2004[edit]

20 June 2004
Reds Australia 29 – 48 Pacific Islanders
Tries: Junior Pelesasa (2), Peter Hynes, Mafi Kefu
Con: Marshall Milroy (3)
Pen: Marshall Milroy
Tries: Sitiveni Sivivatu (3), Seremaia Bai, Sireli Bobo, Lome Fa'atau, Norman Ligairi, Taufa'ao Filise
Con: Seremaia Bai (4)
Ballymore, Brisbane
Attendance: 3,000
Referee: George Ayoub Australia

25 June 2004
WaratahsAustralia 21 – 68 Pacific Islanders
Tries: Morgan Turinui, Tim McGann, Milton Thaiday
Con: Matthew Burke (3)
Tries: Sitiveni Sivivatu (2), Taufa'ao Filise (2), Seilala Mapusua (2), Seremaia Bai, Sisa Koyamaibole, Soane Tonga'uiha, Lome Fa'atau
Con: Seremaia Bai (9)
Aussie Stadium, Sydney
Attendance: 8,005
Referee: Greg Hinton Australia

3 July 2004
Australia  29 – 14 Pacific Islanders
Tries: Stirling Mortlock (2), Matt Giteau (2), Brendan Cannon
Con: Joe Roff, Matthew Burke
Tries: Sione Lauaki, Sireli Bobo
Con: Seremaia Bai (2)
Adelaide Oval, Adelaide
Attendance: 19,266
Referee: André Watson South Africa

Australia: 15.Joe Roff, 14.Clyde Rathbone, 13.Stirling Mortlock, 12.Matt Giteau, 11.Lote Tuqiri, 10.Stephen Larkham, 9.George Gregan (capt), 8.David Lyons, 7.Phil Waugh, 6.Radike Samo, 5.Nathan Sharpe, 4.Justin Harrison, 3.Al Baxter, 2.Brendan Cannon, 1.Bill Young, - replacements: 16.Jeremy Paul, 17.Nic Henderson, 18.Dan Vickerman Temporarily suspended, 19.George Smith, 20.Chris Whitaker, 21.Matt Burke, 22.Chris Latham
Pacific Islanders: 15.Norman Ligairi, 14.Lome Fa'atau, 13.Seilala Mapusua, 12.Seremaia Baikeinuku, 11.Sitiveni Sivivatu, 10.Tanner Vili, 9.Moses Rauluni, 8.Alifereti Doviverata, 7.Sisa Koyamaibole, 6.Sione Lauaki, 5.Ifereimi Rawaqa, 4.Inoke Afeaki (capt), 3.Taufa'ao Filise, 2.'Aleki Lutui, 1.Soane Tonga'uiha, - replacements: 17.Tevita Taumoepeau, 18.Leo Lafaiali'i, 19.Semo Sititi, 20.Steve So'oialo, 21.Seru Rabeni, 22.Sireli Bobo - No entry: 16.Joeli Lotawa


10 July 2004
New Zealand  41 – 26 Pacific Islanders
Tries: Joe Rokocoko (2), Justin Marshall, Rico Gear, Kees Meeuws, Tana Umaga
Con: Daniel Carter (4)
Pen: Daniel Carter
Tries: Sitiveni Sivivatu (2), Seru Rabeni, Sione Lauaki
Con: Seremaia Bai (3)
North Harbour Stadium, Albany
Attendance: 22,000
Referee: Stuart Dickinson Australia

New Zealand: 15.Mils Muliaina, 14.Rico Gear, 13.Tana Umaga (c), 12.Dan Carter, 11.Joe Rokocoko, 10.Carlos Spencer, 9.Justin Marshall, 8.Xavier Rush, 7.Marty Holah, 6.Jono Gibbes, 5.Keith Robinson, 4.Chris Jack, 3.Carl Hayman, 2.Keven Mealamu, 1.Kees Meeuws, - replacements: 18.Jerry Collins, 20.Byron Kelleher, 21.Nick Evans - No entry : 16.Andrew Hore, 17.Greg Somerville, 19.Mose Tuiali'i, 22.Sam Tuitupou
Pacific Islanders: 15.Seru Rabeni, 14.Lome Fa'atau, 13.Brian Lima, 12.Seremaia Baikeinuku, 11.Sitiveni Sivivatu, 10.Tanner Vili, 9.Moses Rauluni, 8.Sisa Koyamaibole, 7.Alifereti Doviverata, 6.Sione Lauaki, 5.Ifereimi Rawaqa, 4.Inoke Afeaki (capt.), 3.Taufa'ao Filise, 2.'Aleki Lutui, 1.Soane Tonga'uiha, - replacements: 17.Tevita Taumoepeau, 18.Filipo Levi, 19.Semo Sititi, 19.Semo Sititi, 21.Tane Tu'ipulotu, 22.Sireli Bobo - No entry: 16.Joeli Lotawa, 20.Steve So'oialo


17 July 2004
South Africa  38 – 24 Pacific Islanders
Tries: Breyton Paulse (2), Jacques Cronjé, Jean de Villiers
Con: Percy Montgomery (3)
Pen: Percy Montgomery (4)
Tries: Sitiveni Sivivatu (2), Sione Lauaki, Sireli Bobo
Con: Seru Rabeni (2)
Express Advocate Stadium, Gosford, Australia
Attendance: 15,732
Referee: Scott Young Australia

South Africa: 15.Percy Montgomery, 14.Breyton Paulse, 13.Marius Joubert, 12.De Wet Barry, 11.Jean de Villiers, 10.Jaco van der Westhuyzen, 9.Bolla Conradie, 8.Jacques Cronje, 7.AJ Venter, 6.Schalk Burger, 5.Gerrie Britz, 4.Bakkies Botha, 3.Eddie Andrews, 2.John Smit (capt.), 1.Os du Randt, - replacements: 17.CJ van der Linde, 18.Quinton Davids, 19.Pedrie Wannenburg, 20.Fourie du Preez - No entry : 16.Danie Coetzee, 21.Brent Russell, 22.Gaffie du Toit
Pacific Islanders: 15.Norman Ligairi, 14.Sireli Bobo, 13.Seilala Mapusua, 12.Seru Rabeni, 11.Sitiveni Sivivatu, 10.Tanner Vili, 9.Moses Rauluni, 8.Sisa Koyamaibole, 7.Alifereti Doviverata, 6.Sione Lauaki, 5.Ifereimi Rawaqa, 4.Inoke Afeaki (capt.), 3.Tevita Taumoepeau, 2.'Aleki Lutui, 1.Soane Tonga'uiha, - replacements: 16.Joeli Lotawa, 17.Taufa'ao Filise, 18.Filipo Levi, 19.Tu Tamarua, 20.Steve So'oialo, 21.Seremaia Baikeinuku, 22.Brian Lima


2006[edit]

11 November 2006
Wales  38–20 Pacific Islanders
Tries: Mark Jones, James Hook, Kevin Morgan, Lee Byrne, Ceri Sweeney
Con: Ceri Sweeney (5)
Pen: Ceri Sweeney
Tries: Justin Va'a, Seilala Mapusua, Kameli Ratuvou
Con: Tusi Pisi
Pen: Tusi Pisi
Millennium Stadium, Cardiff
Attendance: 50,769
Referee: Wayne Barnes England

18 November 2006
Scotland  34 – 22 Pacific Islanders
Tries: Marcus Di Rollo, David Callam, Kelly Brown, Andy Henderson
Con: Chris Paterson (4)
Drop goal: Marcus Di Rollo
Pen: Chris Paterson
Tries: Rupeni Caucaunibuca, Kameli Ratuvou 2, Daniel Leo
Con: Pisi (1)
Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh
Attendance: 19,055
Referee: Bryce Lawrence New Zealand

26 November 2006
Ireland  61 – 17 Pacific Islanders
Tries:Denis Hickie, Paddy Wallace, Malcolm O'Kelly, Simon Easterby(2), Shane Horgan, Rory Best, Paul O'Connell
Con: Paddy Wallace (6)
Pen: Paddy Wallace (3)
Tries: Seru Rabeni, Lome Fa'atau, Tusi Pisi
Con: Tusi Pisi (1)
Lansdowne Road, Dublin
Attendance: 43,000
Referee: Christophe Berdos France

2008[edit]

8 November 2008
England  39 – 13 Pacific Islanders
Tries:Sackey (2), Cipriani, Kennedy, Mears
Con: Cipriani (4)
Pen: Cipriani (2)
(Report) Try Rabeni
Con: Hola
Pen: Hola, Bai
Twickenham, London
Attendance: 55,427
Referee: Matt Goddard Australia

15 November 2008
France  42 – 17 Pacific Islanders
Tries:Tillous-Borde, Szarzewski, Heymans, Picamoles, Medard
Con: Skrela (4)
Pen: Skrela (3)
(Report) Try:Taione
Pen: Bai (4)
Stade Auguste Bonal, Montbéliard
Attendance: 20,000
Referee: Nigel Owens Wales

22 November 2008
Italy  17 – 25 Pacific Islanders
Tries: Ghiraldini 16' c
Mauro Bergamasco 65' c
Con: Marcato (2)
Pen: Marcato 6'
(Report) Tries: Delasau 3' c, 29' m
Ratuvou 40' c
Con: Bai (2)
Pen: Bai 18', 42'
Stadio Giglio, Reggio Emilia
Attendance: 13,595
Referee: Wayne Barnes England

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Pacific Islanders' choice restricted", Planet-Rugby.com, 31 July 2006
  2. ^ Ackford, Paul (2008-10-18). "Pacific Islanders looking for a revolution as they prepare to tour Europe". Daily Telegraph (UK: Telegraph Media Group). Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  3. ^ "Pacific Islands record first-ever victory". ESPN. 22 November 2008. Retrieved 20 February 2013. 
  4. ^ Samoa quits Pacific Islands Rugby Alliance

External links[edit]