The Taula Eels of Vaimauga have done it.
They are 2017 Super 9 Rugby Championships champions.
The Eels defeated the Chiefs of Aana Aiga I le Tai & Falelatai at Apia Park yesterday, 38-17.
The win maintained the Eels unbeaten record this year. Players from both teams went emotional when the national anthem of Samoa was sung before the clash.
Both teams had a solid start within the first ten minutes of the game with lots of physical contact.
Eels were the first to score points from two penalties kicked by their Captain Patrick Fa’apale.
The Chiefs opened their account with a try from their openside flanker and skipper Elia Tolufale. The conversion from the corner by Malu Falaniko was successful.
But discipline let the Chiefs down. The Eels earned an early advantage when Chief’s lock Tulele Masoe was sinned binned.
Patrick Faapale quickly switched made them pay with a penalty conversion, given them a slight edge, 9-7, at half time.
Within ten minutes of the second spell, the Eels found momentum on attack when number eight Malcolm Tanielu broke away from the scrum and muscled his way through to the try line for his team’s first try.
Errors continued to hurt the Chiefs and when the Eels scored again through, Fagu Malloy, things were not looking good for the Chiefs. Faapale was able to convert and their lead increased.
Chief’s Captain Elia Tolufale was also sent off and that allowed the floodgates to open.
Malcolm Tanielu scored his second try of the match next to the post after breaking from a scrum on the five metre mark.
Eels were on fire and their attacking tactic was extremely dangerous during the last 20 minutes of the game.
They were also awarded with a penalty try after a high shot tackle from the Chiefs winger to their fullback while chasing a crosskick to the corner.
Chiefs fought back with a late try but it wasn’t enough.
Captain Faapale was extremely happy with his team’s performance dedicating the win for his brothers in Samoa A squad, their sponsors and Vaimauga.
“I am so proud of the boys,” he said. “We played our hearts out for our brothers that took us here but because of their commitment to Samoa, they weren’t able to play.
“We also dedicate this win to our Sponsor Taula, our Vaimauga district as well as our fans and families.”