Mixed feelings going around Samoa where people don’t know whether winning the plate is something to celebrate or ponder on the fact that we had a real chance to get the Vancouver Sevens cup with our near win against New Zealand in the quarter finals.
Samoa’s 12-17 narrow loss against New Zealand led them to defeating Scotland 24-17 and then on to beating USA 31-19 sealing possession of the plate.
Samoa Observer got views from members of the public about how they felt with winning the plate.
For Palota Fiso a 37 year old from Tulaele he’s just happy that our boys brought home something but there’s always room for improvement.
“At least we have the plate, it’s not the cup but it’s better than nothing. The team did well, the new boys performed better than I thought they would,” Mr. Fiso said.
“The only thing that’s not good about the team is that the boys love to try going on their own. They don’t have good team work, majority of the time the boys run ahead without anyone covering them which leads to them losing the ball.”
When asked if the team has a future in the sport, Mr. Fiso said that they need to improve or else they won’t have a future in sevens.
“The team that we have right now has no future in the game of sevens if they do not change their game plan and try work together better,” Mr. Fiso said.
“The team is good but they won’t make it far if they don’t learn how to play together because none of them can win the tournament alone…. they need the support of their teammates.”
According to Mr. Fiso, even the tackles were unsatisfactory with the boys needing at least three players to take down one guy.
“For our 2009-2010 squad they made sure they took down the other player by themselves making sure the player to player ratio was 1:1 retaining a big overlap,” Mr. Fiso said.
“Right now I don’t see that anymore, even when playing against little Kenyan players it takes us 3 guys to take down one of them.”
The performance of the boys is not the fault of the coach says Mr. Fiso.
“The coach is ok I guess, but in all honesty it’s not about the coach; it’s about the players,” Mr. Fiso said.
“The players just need to get into their head that there is no ‘I’ in team and once they learn how to work as a team there will be a future for the Manu Samoa 7’s squad.”
For Pua Nonu from Lona Fagaloa he agrees that the coach isn’t to blame for the players not performing.
“The boys did not perform well enough. I was asking myself the other day how the Fijian team has a foreign coach yet they perform very well,” Mr. Nonu said.
“And here we are with our foreign coach and our team still doesn’t do too well. It’s not the coach but it’s the players. There’s no unity amongst our boys and they need to work on that, they need to improve their teamwork.”
Another issue noticed by Mr. Nonu was the level of fitness our boys have.
“The boys also need to work on their fitness because they seem very tired halfway through their game with New Zealand and if they were fit then that game would have easily been ours,” Mr. Nonu said.
“They wasted a lot of time that they needed just walking around instead of tapping the ball and just going when the penalty was theirs.Fitness is the biggest part of any sport.”