By Loveni Enari
It was only pride they were playing for, the points that mattered for Manu Samoa disappeared last week versus Japan, but fans at least saw a valiant performance in the narrow loss to England, as once again the team failed to qualify for the quarter finals.
It's the seemingly inevitable sadness we've been suffering for over 20 years since those pioneering Manu Samoa teams of the 1990s so successfully brought our nation to the top table.
We all know it's only regular games against Tier 1 nations that will allow us to truly compete but 'world' Rugby didn't invite us to the first World Cup and have not changed their attitude in the meantime no matter how many more brave, entertaining losses and circle prayer sessions with Tier 1 players we are involved in.
Despite this there was some real good to come of the campaign.
Fritz Lee was our player of the tournament, magnificent play, great leadership.…more
Tonga faced off against defending world champions, the Springboks, and played out an entertaining ten-try thriller during their Pool B encounter.
The Springboks proved their mettle, ultimately emerging victorious with a scoreline of 49-18.
Looking ahead, Tonga remains undeterred, focusing on concluding their World Cup campaign on a positive note. Their sights are set on the upcoming encounter against Romania scheduled for Monday, 9th October at 4:45 AM NZDT. Tonga's team is primed and prepared to bring their best to the field, aiming for a resounding victory to cap off their campaign.
In a crucial face-off for both teams, the Manu Samoa clashed with Japan's Brave Blossoms in their third pool game of the 2023 Rugby World Cup, desperately needing a win to secure a spot in the quarter-finals.
However, they faced a formidable Japanese side that proved too strong to conquer. Catch all the highlights as Samoa took on Japan at Rugby World Cup 2023.
The game was intense from the start, with both teams showcasing their prowess on the field. The pressure was immense as Manu Samoa strived to break through Japan's defense and secure the much-needed victory. However, a series of penalties and passing mistakes proved to be their downfall.
Japan, capitalising on these errors, skillfully maneuvered their way through the game, scoring points and maintaining a dominant position. Despite a valiant effort from Manu Samoa, they were unable to bridge the gap, ultimately falling short against a resilient Japanese side.
Samoa will play their final pool game against England on Sunday, 8th Oct 2023 4:45am NZDT.
Cover Image by World Rugby / World Rugby via Getty Images
Go behind the scenes & check out highlights from the UFC 293 Sydney fight week & fight night.
'The Crowd Goes Wild's' Tim Provise shows us around the UFC Fan Experience and then hear from our Samoan fighters on the card what it means to them to represent their heritage on this global arena.
Featuring Carlos Ulberg, Tyson Pedro, Justin Tafa, Tai Tuivasa & Israel Adesanya
Keepin It Fresh brings you all the freshness happening in our Moana communities, from Siva Afi Festivals to Fashion Shows.
Directors - Penina Momoiseā & Althea Strydom
OPC - Junior Meredith
Editor - Sefa Taouma, Laura McBeath
Presenter - Tim Provise
Additional BTS Footage - Penina & Jirah Momoiseā
Additional Fight footage - UFC
Thank you Mick Earsman and the UFC
By James Nokise
There was a moment right after the Scotland vs Tonga match that not many of the TV networks chose to show.
The Ikale Tahi who, despite a close first half, were beaten by a well-rested Scottish team 45 - 17, returned to the field to thank their fans.
Normally when a team takes a moment like this they are celebrating a victory, but Tonga’s situation did not require a lap of Stade de Nice, just a couple of quick visits to two small groups.
Don’t be fooled by any official photos you may see that imply the crowd support was equal.…more
In a pivotal second pool game of the 2023 Rugby World Cup, Tonga's Ikale Tahi faced off against Scotland, seeking a victory that would keep their World Cup dreams alive. However, their efforts fell short as Scotland emerged victorious with a commanding score of 45-17.
Tonga fought valiantly against a formidable Scottish side. The Tongan team showcased moments of brilliance, gaining an early lead when Solomone Kata scored the Tonga's first try of the game after a successful penalty kick from fly-half David Havili. However, Scotland's superior performance and cohesive gameplay ultimately secured a decisive win.
This defeat marks the end of Tonga's contention in the 2023 Rugby World Cup, dimming their hopes of advancing to the quarterfinals.
Nevertheless, Tonga hope to go out on a high, looking for wins in the remainder of their pool games. They go up against South Africa on Monday 2, October 2023 and 8:00 NZDT.
Cover Image from World Rugby via Getty Images
The Manu Samoa went up against Argentina's Los Pumas in their second pool game of the 2023 Rugby World Cup. Samoa, however, unfortunately fell short against the Argentine side.
Samoa fell short due to an early yellow card, errors in the first half, and missed penalties, which proved costly in the end. Argentina managed to secure a hard-earned win by capitalizing on key opportunities and executing their game plan effectively.
Nonetheless, Samoa remains steadfast, ready to take on Japan in their next pool game on Friday 29 September, 8am NZDT.
Cover Image from World Rugby via Getty Images
By Loveni Enari
The Manu Samoa rugby team might be playing on the fields of southern France but they are receiving specialised, scientific Samoan expertise all the way from Atlanta, Georgia in the US.
In a CoconetTV exclusive we can reveal that Manumalo Muasau, Mental Performance Coach to the NFL team, the Tennessee Titans, is working closely with top players in Manu Samoa to provide that extra edge, in the all important top two inches.
Manu Samoa's coach Vaovasamanaia Seilala Mapusua and Muasau had followed each other on social media for quite a while and finally connected after the coach reached out a few weeks ago for assistance to our boys in royal-blue at the Rugby World Cup.
‘Coach Mapusua is a former elite athlete but as a coach he’s someone who’s brilliant in understanding wellbeing and performance holistically, not just physically but mentally as well,’ says Manumalo, which means ‘victory’ in English.…more
There’s a late player and captain for the Manu Samoa rugby team who died in 2005 but whose name is still mentioned with a wistful, 100 yard stare and a ‘Kalofa e’ - Samoan for ‘poor thing’ or ‘how sad’.
His name was Faitala Talapusi, Skipper as he was known in his playing days, and Rev in his latter years. He hailed from the village of Vaiala and grew up directly opposite the main entrance back then, to Apia Park.
‘Kalofa e,’ because Faitala was only 55 when cancer took him in the prime of his intellectual career as a lecturer, reverend and theologian, his playing days long in the rear vision mirror by then.
He had been the captain of the Manu Samoa rugby team in the late 1970s and CEO in 1995/6, but apart from his much admired, on-field talent, he was also a hugely intelligent, likeable character off the field, unique in his generation for his ability to lead, unite and inspire.…more
There are few rugby wins that resonate beyond the final whistle, leaving an indelible mark on both fans and the sporting world, but the 2023 Rugby World Cup bore witness to one such historic moment - a triumph decades in the making.
In an amazing display of skill and determination, Fiji scripted a tale of resounding victory, defeating Australia in their second World Cup pool game, their first win over the Aussie side in an astonishing 69 years.
The energy was high even before kick off, with the Flying Fijians sending the crowd into a roar with their pre-match Cibi
In what was a high-octane match from start to finish, the Flying Fijians managed to hold off a strong Wallabies side, ending the game 22-15 and placing them second in the Pool C standings, behind Wales.
Fiji's win over Australia will remain vivid in the hearts of the players and fans of the team for a long time to come. Their next pool game will be against Georgia on Sunday, 1st October at 4:45am NZDT.