Samoa beat Fiji in Pacific Cup

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Samoa drew first blood in the Pacific Cup rugby competition when they beat Fiji 8-3 in Apia, Samoa, today.

Only one try, by Samoan openside flanker Alapasa Cordtz, was scored on the muddy Apia Park as both teams shed their island-style running rugby for the tight forward slugfest.

Gavin Williams kicked a penalty for Samoa's other points and Fijian fullback Taniela Rawaqa kicked his team's only points from an early penalty.

Both teams lost the ball continually in the difficult conditions but Samoa's experience gave them an edge to penetrate the stubborn Fijian defence for the winner.

With both teams assembling players from overseas clubs, the experience factor became critical, with the home team showing more control in the contact area.

Tonga, Japan, Australia A and the Junior All Blacks are the other teams in the competition.