Samoa national rugby union team

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Samoa
Shirt badge/Association crest
Nickname(s) Manu Samoa
Emblem Southern cross
Union Samoa Rugby Union
Head coach Alama Ieremia
Captain David Lemi
Most caps Brian Lima (64)
Top scorer Earl Va'a (172)
Top try scorer Brian Lima (29)
Home stadium Apia Park
First colours
Second colours
World Rugby ranking
Current 14 (as of 21 November 2016)
Highest 7 (2013)
Lowest 15 (2016)
First international
Samoa 0–6 Fiji
(Apia, Samoa; 18 August 1924)
Biggest win
Samoa 115–7 Papua New Guinea
(Apia, Samoa; 11 July 2009)
Biggest defeat
New Zealand 101–14 Samoa
(New Plymouth, New Zealand; 3 September 2008)
World Cup
Appearances 6 (First in 1991)
Best result Quarter-finals, 1991, 1995
Website www.manusamoa.com

The Samoa national rugby union team (also known as Manu Samoa) is the men's representative side of Samoa in rugby union. The Samoa Rugby Union is owned by the affiliated rugby unions of Samoa. The name Manu Samoa is in honour of a famous Samoan warrior. They perform a traditional Samoan challenge called the siva tau before each game. Samoa Rugby Union were formerly members of the Pacific Islands Rugby Alliance (PIRA) along with Fiji and Tonga.[1] They are ranked 12th in the world.[2]

Rugby was introduced to Samoa in the early 1920s and a governing body was soon formed. The first international was played as Western Samoa against Fiji in August 1924. Along with Tonga, these nations would meet regularly and eventually contest competitions such as the Pacific Tri-Nations – with Western Samoa winning the first of these. From 1924 to 1997 Samoa was known and competed as Western Samoa.

Samoa have been to every Rugby World Cup since the 1991 tournament. That tournament, along with the 1995 competition saw them make the quarter-finals. Under their new coach, the All Blacks legend Michael Jones (himself of Samoan descent and a Samoan international), Samoa competed in the 2007 Rugby World Cup. However, Samoa had a dismal World Cup campaign, winning only one match and finishing fourth in their group. Samoa showed an improved performance at the 2011 Rugby World Cup, winning two matches by comfortable margins, and losing close matches to South Africa and Wales.

Manu Samoa play in blue and white uniforms. They do not train on Sundays because many of the team are devout Christians.[citation needed]

History[edit]

The Marist Brothers brought the game of rugby to Western Samoa in 1924 and The Western Samoa Rugby Football Union was formed in 1924. On 18 August 1924, Western Samoa played its first international against Fiji in the capital Apia, the visitors winning 6–0. The match was played at 7am to allow the Samoans time to get to work afterwards and was played on a pitch with a large tree on the halfway line. The return match was won 9–3 by Samoa to draw the series.

In 1954 Western Samoan visited both Pacific Island neighbors Fiji and Tonga but had to wait a further 20 years before a tour of New Zealand took place. The Samoans won one of eight matches on that tour.

The traditional tri-series between Tonga, Fiji and Western Samoa was established in 1982 with Western Samoa winning the first tournament. Wales visited Western Samoa and won the test 32–16 at Apia. The tour led to a return visit to Wales which brought Western Samoa out of International limbo, although Western Samoa were not invited to the first Rugby World Cup in 1987.

The following year a 14-match tour of Europe took place before a World Cup elimination series in Tokyo, which gave Western Samoa a place in the 1991 Rugby World Cup in Britain. They made a huge impact. After sweeping aside Wales 16–13 in Cardiff and defeating Argentina 35–12, and narrowly losing 3–9 to eventual champions Australia in their pool match, Western Samoa, a country with a population of 160,000, found itself in the quarterfinals against Scotland at Murrayfield. The Scots won comfortably 28–6, but the Samoans were clearly the personality team of the tournament.

Over the next two years the side had a number of notable wins. The most outstanding achievement were in Sevens where it won the 1993 Hong Kong and 1992 Middlesex Sevens. The 1995 Rugby World Cup in South Africa proved that the team belonged in top company. They again reached the quarterfinals after wins over Argentina and Italy, but were beaten 42–14 by the eventual winners South Africa. After the Cup, Manu Samoa made a 13-match tour of England and Scotland, drawing 15–15 with the Scots and going down 27–9 to England.

With the advent of professional rugby in 1995 it was vital for Manu Samoa to develop a new administrative structure. This was made possible with Fay Richwhite and the Western Samoan Rugby Union joining forces to form Manu Samoa Rugby Limited. Fay Richwhite invested $5 million from 1995 to 2004 into Samoan rugby.[3][4]

Samoa emerged from the 1999 World Cup with its honor intact after another shock 38–31 victory over host nation Wales in the pool stages. They again lost out to Scotland in the quarter final play-off.

Manu Samoa qualified for the 2003 World Cup with a 17–16 loss against Fiji, Earl Va'a missing an injury-time penalty. They recovered to beat Tonga both home and away and avenged that Fijian defeat with a 22–12 win in Nadi. They ultimately had to settle for second place in the round robin, behind Fiji on points difference, and a place in the tougher of the two Rugby World Cup 2003 pools alongside automatic qualifiers England and South Africa. In one of the games of the tournament, they led eventual champions England for most of the game before losing 35–22.

Samoa qualified for the 2011 World Cup after beating Papua New Guinea 73–12 in Port Moresby on 18 July 2009. They won 188–19 on aggregate over two matches against Papua New Guinea, having won 115–7 at Apia Park the previous week.[5]

Samoa began their 2011 World Cup campaign preparation with a flying start, after registering an upset against No.2 ranked Australia with a four-try-to-two win of 32–23.[6]

World Cup record[edit]

Samoa performing their Siva Tau before playing South Africa at the 2007 Rugby World Cup
Year(s) Result
1987 Did not participate
1991 Quarterfinals
1995 Quarterfinals
1999 Quarterfinal play-offs
2003 Pool stage
2007 Pool stage
2011 Pool stage
2015 Pool stage

In one of the scenes of the feature film, Invictus, Western Samoa can be seen playing South Africa in the 1995 Rugby World Cup.

Wins against Tier 1 nations[edit]

Overall record[edit]

Top 30 rankings as of 5 December 2016[7]
Rank Change* Team Points
1 Steady  New Zealand 94.78
2 Steady  England 89.84
3 Steady  Australia 86.97
4 Steady  Ireland 84.62
5 Increase1  Wales 82.55
6 Decrease1  South Africa 81.79
7 Steady  Scotland 80.67
8 Steady  France 80.13
9 Steady  Argentina 79.91
10 Steady  Fiji 76.46
11 Steady  Japan 74.22
12 Steady  Georgia 74.14
13 Steady  Italy 72.47
14 Increase1  Tonga 71.94
15 Decrease1  Samoa 71.25
16 Steady  Romania 69.36
17 Steady  United States 64.66
18 Steady  Canada 63.95
19 Steady  Russia 63.25
20 Steady  Namibia 62.78
21 Steady  Uruguay 60.66
22 Steady  Spain 60.17
23 Steady  Kenya 59.28
24 Steady  Germany 58.99
25 Steady  Portugal 56.97
26 Steady  Belgium 56.87
27 Steady  Hong Kong 56.50
28 Steady  South Korea 55.50
29 Steady  Chile 55.08
30 Steady  Netherlands 54.93
*Change from the previous week
Samoa's historical rankings
Samoa IRB World Rankings.png
Source: World Rugby - Graph updated to 5 December 2016[7]

Below is table of the representative rugby matches played by a Samoa national XV at test level up until 26 November 2016.[8]

Opponent Played Won Lost Drawn Win % For Aga Diff
 Argentina 4 3 1 0 75% 111 82 +29
 Australia 5 1 4 0 20.00% 58 204 −146
 Belgium 1 1 0 0 100.00% 37 8 +29
 Canada 6 6 0 0 100.00% 169 103 +66
 England 7 0 7 0 0.00% 100 244 -144
 Fiji 50 20 27 3 40.00% 880 977 -97
 Fiji XV 3 0 3 0 0.00% 20 58 -38
 France 4 0 4 0 0.00% 49 156 -107
 Georgia 4 1 2 1 25.00% 96 64 +32
 Ireland 6 1 5 0 16.67% 103 209 -106
 Italy 7 5 2 0 71.42% 175 109 +66
 Japan 15 11 4 0 73.33% 482 273 +209
 South Korea 1 1 0 0 100.00% 74 7 +67
 Namibia 2 2 0 0 100.00% 89 25 +64
 New Zealand 6 0 6 0 0.00% 72 333 -261
 Papua New Guinea 2 2 0 0 100.00% 188 19 +169
 Romania 1 0 1 0 0.00% 24 32 -8
 Scotland 10 1 8 1 10.00% 155 254 -99
 South Africa 9 0 9 0 0.00% 99 431 -332
 Tonga 61 33 24 4 54.10% 1070 882 +188
 United States 5 5 0 0 100.00% 117 85 +32
 Uruguay 1 1 0 0 100.00% 60 13 +47
 Wales 9 4 5 0 44.44% 163 216 -49
 West Germany 1 1 0 0 100.00% 54 9 +45
Total 220 99 112 9 45.00% 4445 4793 -348

Current squad[edit]

On 17 October, Alama Ieremia named a 33-man squad ahead of their 2016 November internationals against France (12 November), Georgia (19 November) and Canada (25 November).[9]

Talaga Alofipo was later called up to the squad ahead of the first test against France.

  • Head Coach: New Zealand Alama Ieremia
  • Assistant Coach: Samoa Semo Sititi
  • Assistant Coach: New Zealand Richard Watt
  • Assistant Coach: New Zealand Daniel Cron
  • Caps Updated: 26 November 2016

Note: Flags indicate national union for the club/province as defined by World Rugby.

Player Position Date of Birth (Age) Caps Club/province
Avei, OleOle Avei Hooker (1983-06-13) June 13, 1983 (age 33) 24 France Bordeaux Bègles
Elia, EliaElia Elia Hooker (1996-01-22) January 22, 1996 (age 20) 3 New Zealand Canterbury
Leiataua, ManuManu Leiataua Hooker (1986-12-26) December 26, 1986 (age 29) 13 France Bayonne
Johnston, CensusCensus Johnston Prop (1981-05-06) May 6, 1981 (age 35) 56 France Toulouse
Leatigaga, NephiNephi Leatigaga Prop (1993-12-05) December 5, 1993 (age 23) 1 New Zealand Manurewa
Mulipola, Logovi'iLogovi'i Mulipola Prop (1987-03-11) March 11, 1987 (age 29) 20 England Leicester Tigers
Perenise, AnthonyAnthony Perenise Prop (1982-10-18) October 18, 1982 (age 34) 30 England Bristol
Sasagi, HisaHisa Sasagi Prop (1987-06-29) June 29, 1987 (age 29) 1 New Zealand Otago
Taulafo, SakariaSakaria Taulafo Prop (1983-01-29) January 29, 1983 (age 33) 44 France Stade Français
Alofipo, TalagaTalaga Alofipo Lock (1992-11-21) November 21, 1992 (age 24) 2 Samoa Vaimoso
Faʻasalele, PiulaPiula Faʻasalele Lock (1988-01-22) January 22, 1988 (age 28) 5 France Toulouse
Lemalu, Fa'atigaFa'atiga Lemalu Lock (1989-04-17) April 17, 1989 (age 27) 18 Japan Sunwolves
Lepa, JeffJeff Lepa Lock (1991-09-10) September 10, 1991 (age 25) 6 New Zealand Tasman
Paulo, FiloFilo Paulo Lock (1987-11-06) November 6, 1987 (age 29) 27 Italy Benetton Treviso
Vui, ChrisChris Vui Lock (1993-02-11) February 11, 1993 (age 23) 1 New Zealand North Harbour
Fa'afou, OneoneOneone Fa'afou Flanker (1992-06-02) June 2, 1992 (age 24) 4 Samoa Vaiala
Foe, GregGreg Foe Flanker (1991-12-17) December 17, 1991 (age 24) 5 New Zealand Wellington
Lam, JackJack Lam Flanker (1987-11-18) November 18, 1987 (age 29) 21 England Bristol
Mamea, GenesisGenesis Mamea Flanker (1988-09-22) September 22, 1988 (age 28) 3 France Perpignan
Fa'osiliva, AlafotiAlafoti Fa'osiliva Number 8 (1985-10-28) October 28, 1985 (age 31) 21 England Worcester Warriors
Cowley, PelePele Cowley Scrum-half (1993-04-16) April 16, 1993 (age 23) 6 New Zealand Waikato
Fotuali'i, KahnKahn Fotuali'i Scrum-half (1982-05-22) May 22, 1982 (age 34) 31 England Bath
Tusitala, DannyDanny Tusitala Scrum-half (1991-10-18) October 18, 1991 (age 25) 3 New Zealand Ponsonby
Fa'apale, PatrickPatrick Fa'apale Fly-half (1991-05-03) May 3, 1991 (age 25) 12 Samoa Vaiala
Leuila, D'angeloD'angelo Leuila Fly-half (1997-01-18) January 18, 1997 (age 19) 5 New Zealand Southland
Lee-Lo, ReyRey Lee-Lo Centre (1986-02-20) February 20, 1986 (age 30) 11 Wales Cardiff Blues
Peleseuma, OpeOpe Peleseuma Centre (1992-02-11) February 11, 1992 (age 24) 1 New Zealand Old Boys Marist
Pisi, GeorgeGeorge Pisi Centre (1986-06-29) June 29, 1986 (age 30) 21 England Northampton Saints
Stanley, WinstonWinston Stanley Centre (1989-02-11) February 11, 1989 (age 27) 3 England Harlequins
Williams, PaulPaul Williams Centre (1983-04-22) April 22, 1983 (age 33) 19 France Stade Français
Lemi, DavidDavid Lemi (c) Wing (1982-02-10) February 10, 1982 (age 34) 48 England Bristol
Perez, PaulPaul Perez Wing (1986-07-26) July 26, 1986 (age 30) 19 France Toulouse
Pisi, KenKen Pisi Wing (1989-02-24) February 24, 1989 (age 27) 12 England Northampton Saints
Nikoro, AlbertAlbert Nikoro Fullback (1992-08-07) August 7, 1992 (age 24) 5 Australia Western Force
Tuala, AhseeAhsee Tuala Fullback (1989-08-23) August 23, 1989 (age 27) 5 England Northampton Saints

Individual all-time records[edit]

Most caps[edit]

# Player Pos Span Mat Start Sub Pts Tries Won Lost Draw %
1 Brian Lima Wing 1991–2007 64 61 3 140 29 31 31 2 50.00
2 To'o Vaega Centre 1986–2001 61 56 5 71 0 35 25 1 58.19
3 Semo Sititi Flanker 1999–2009 59 50 9 85 17 33 26 0 55.93
4 Census Johnston Prop 2005– 52 40 12 20 4 23 28 1 45.49
5 Opeta Palepoi Lock 1998–2005 43 30 13 10 2 24 19 0 55.81
6 David Lemi Wing 2004–2014 42 34 8 55 11 19 22 1 46.42
7 Mahonri Schwalger Hooker 2000–11 40 33 7 20 4 18 22 0 45.00
Zak Taulafo Prop 2009- 40 35 5 5 18 20 2 47.50
9 Daniel Leo Wing 2005– 39 33 6 0 0 22 16 1 57.69
10 Steve So'oialo Scrum-half 1998–2007 38 31 7 25 5 18 20 0 47.36

Last updated: Scotland vs Samoa, 10 October 2015. Statistics include officially capped matches only.[10]

Most tries[edit]

# Player Pos Span Mat Start Sub Pts Tries
1 Brian Lima Wing 1991–2007 64 61 3 140 29
2 Alesana Tuilagi Wing 2002–2015 37 35 2 90 18
3 Semo Sititi Flanker 1999–2009 59 50 9 85 17
4 Afato So'oalo Wing 1996–2001 20 18 2 75 15
5 Lome Fa'atau Wing 2000–2007 35 31 4 70 14
6 To'o Vaega Centre 1986–2001 61 56 5 71 12
7 David Lemi Wing 2004–2014 42 34 8 55 11
8 George Leaupepe Centre 1995–2005 26 23 3 50 10
9 Elvis Seveali'i Centre 2000–2007 20 16 4 45 9
10. 3 players on 7 tries

Last updated: Scotland vs Samoa, 10 October 2015. Statistics include officially capped matches only.[11]

Most points[edit]

# Player Pos Span Mat Pts Tries Conv Pens Drop
1 Earl Va'a Fly-half 1996–2003 28 174 3 36 31 0
2 Tusi Pisi Fly-half 2011– 25 172 2 13 44 2
3 Silao Leaega Fullback 1997–2002 19 145 2 21 31 0
4 Brian Lima Wing 1991–2007 64 140 29 0 0 0
5 Darren Kellett Fly-half 1993–1995 13 137 2 14 31 2
6 Roger Warren Fly-half 2004–08 12 119 0 13 29 2
7 Gavin Williams Centre 2007–10 16 106 5 18 15 0
8 Tanner Vili Fly-half 1999–2006 31 99 4 20 13 0
9 Alesana Tuilagi Wing 2002– 37 90 18 0 0 0
10 Semo Sititi Flanker 1999–2009 59 85 17 0 0 0

Last updated: Scotland vs Samoa, 10 October 2015. Statistics include officially capped matches only.[12]

Most points in a match[edit]

# Player Pos Pts Tries Conv Pens Drop Opposition Venue Date
1. Gavin Williams Centre 30 2 10 0 0  Papua New Guinea Samoa Apia 11/07/2009
2. Roger Warren Fly-half 24 0 0 8 0  Tonga Samoa Apia 29/05/2004
3. Andrew Aiolupo Fullback 23 1 8 1 0  South Korea Japan Tokyo 08/04/1990
Silao Leaega Fullback 23 1 3 4 0  Japan Wales Wrexham 03/10/1999
Toa Samania Fullback 23 1 3 4 0  Italy Samoa Apia 08/07/2000
6. Darren Kellett Fly-half 22 0 2 5 1  Tonga Samoa Moamoa 04/06/1994
7. To'o Vaega Centre 21 1 4 3 0  Fiji Samoa Apia 01/06/1991
Earl Va'a Fly-half 21 1 5 2 0  Georgia Australia Perth 19/10/2003
Roger Warren Fly-half 21 0 3 4 1  Fiji Samoa Apia 09/07/2005
10. 5 players on 20 points

Last updated: Scotland vs Samoa, 10 October 2015. Statistics include officially capped matches only.[13]

Most tries in a match[edit]

# Player Pos Pts Tries Conv Pens Drop Opposition Venue Date
1. Elvis Seveali'i Wing 20 4 0 0 0  Japan Samoa Apia 10/06/2000
Alesana Tuilagi Wing 20 4 0 0 0  Tonga Samoa Apia 02/07/2005
Esera Lauina Wing 20 4 0 0 0  Papua New Guinea Samoa Apia 11/07/2009
Robert Lilomaiava Wing 20 4 0 0 0  Canada Wales Colwyn Bay 09/11/2012
5. Tupo Fa'amasino Wing 12 3 0 0 0  South Korea Japan Tokyo 08/04/1990
Brian Lima Centre 12 3 0 0 0  Fiji Samoa Apia 01/06/1991
Afato So'oalo Wing 15 3 0 0 0  Tonga Samoa Apia 28/06/1997
Dominic Feau'nati Wing 15 3 0 0 0  Namibia Namibia Windhoek 12/07/2003
Mikaela Pesamino Wing 15 3 0 0 0  Papua New Guinea Papua New Guinea Port Moresby 18/07/2009
Alesana Tuilagi Wing 15 3 0 0 0  Namibia New Zealand Rotorua 14/09/2011

Last updated: Scotland vs Samoa, 10 October 2015. Statistics include officially capped matches only.[11]

Most matches as captain[edit]

# Player Pos Span Mat Won Lost Draw % Pts Tries Conv Pens Drop
1. Semo Sititi Flanker 2000–2007 39 19 20 0 48.71 45 9 0 0 0
2. Pat Lam Number 8 1995–1999 23 8 13 2 39.13 10 2 0 0 0
3. Peter Fatialofa Prop 1990–1995 16 11 5 0 68.75 9 2 0 0 0
4. Mahonri Schwalger Hooker 2009–2011 13 5 8 0 38.46 0 0 0 0 0
5. David Lemi Wing 2012–2014 12 7 4 1 62.50 25 5 0 0 0
6. George Stowers Number 8 2008–2009 7 4 3 0 57.14 10 2 0 0 0
7. Filipo Levi Lock 2008–2011 3 1 2 0 33.33 0 0 0 0 0
Taufusi Salesa Centre 1984–1987 3 0 3 0 0.00 10 0 2 2 0
Paul Williams Centre 2013 3 2 1 0 66.66 19 1 4 2 0
10. 9 players on 2 matches

Last updated: Scotland vs Samoa, 10 October 2015. Statistics include officially capped matches only.[14]

Youngest players[edit]

# Player Pos Age Opposition Venue Date
1. Anitele'a Tuilagi Centre 19 years and 27 days  Tonga Samoa Apia 02/07/2005
2. Carl Manu (Centre) 19 years and 59 days  Fiji Samoa Apia 01/06/2002
3. Brian Lima Centre 19 years and 123 days  Tonga Tonga Nuku'alofa 28/05/1991
4. Va'a Tasi Wing 19 years and 136 days  Fiji Fiji Suva 04/07/1981
5. Esera Puleitu Fly-half 19 years and 149 days  South Africa South Africa Johannesburg 13/04/1995
6. Na'ama Leleimalefaga (Prop) 19 years and 180 days  Fiji Samoa Apia 19/05/2007
7. Roysiu Tolufale (Prop) 19 years and 271 days  New Zealand New Zealand New Plymouth 03/09/2008
8. Lio Falaniko Flanker 19 years and 273 days  Tonga Samoa Apia 17/06/1990
Timoteo Iosua Fullback 19 years and 273 days  Japan New Zealand New Plymouth 17/06/2006
10. Mussolini Schuster Wing 19 years and 342 days  Scotland Scotland Murrayfield 18/11/2000

Last updated: Scotland vs Samoa, 10 October 2015. Statistics include officially capped matches only.[15]

Oldest players[edit]

# Player Pos Age Opposition Venue Date
1. Peter Fatialofa Prop 37 years and 85 days  Fiji Fiji Suva 20/07/1996
2. To'o Vaega (Centre) 36 years and 86 days  Ireland Republic of Ireland Lansdowne Road 11/11/2001
3. Maurie Fa'asavalu Flanker 35 years and 271 days  Scotland England Newcastle 10/10/2015
4. Brian Lima Centre 35 years and 240 days  England France Nantes 22/09/2007
5. John Schuster Centre 35 years and 160 days  United States Samoa Apia 26/06/1999
6. Semo Sititi Number 8 35 years and 134 days  Papua New Guinea Papua New Guinea Port Moresby 18/07/2009
7. Afa Leu'u Prop 34 years and 315 days  Ireland Republic of Ireland Lansdowne Road 12/11/1996
8. Jeremy Tomuli Prop 34 years and 247 days  Japan New Zealand New Plymouth 17/06/2006
9. Alesana Tuilagi Centre 34 years and 221 days  Japan England Milton Keynes 03/10/2015
10. Tani Fuga (Hooker) 34 years and 64 days  Tonga France Montpellier 16/09/2007

Last updated: Scotland vs Samoa, 10 October 2015. Statistics include officially capped matches only.[16]

The New Zealand connection[edit]

Western Samoa's triumph in the 1991 Rugby World Cup was inspired by their assistant coach Bryan Williams,[citation needed] who was a New Zealand-born (of Samoan descent) All Black great of the 1970s. The 1991 Samoan World Cup team included many New Zealand born or raised players; the catalyst was Auckland prop Peter Fatialofa, who in 1989, became the first major New Zealand-based player to play for Samoa. By the time of the 1991 World Cup several other New Zealand-born Samoans like Pat Lam, Stephen Bachop, Frank Bunce and Apollo Perelini had joined him. New Zealand born players with Samoan parentage have played for Samoa, such as Earl Va'a, Pat Lam and Lome Fa'atau.

The rugby relationship that exists between New Zealand and Samoa is a complex one. Close ties exist between the two countries, these bonds first being formed with the start of mass Polynesian migration to New Zealand in the latter half of the twentieth century. In the 2007 World Cup there were 14 New Zealand-born players in the Samoan squad.[17] The only team with more foreign born players in their squad was Italy who had 15.[17]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

External links[edit]