Wales brace for Manu onslaught

By Joyetter Feagaimaali’i-Luamanu ,

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APIA PARK ACTION: Wales go through their paces during a training run at Apia Park yesterday evening.

APIA PARK ACTION: Wales go through their paces during a training run at Apia Park yesterday evening. (Photo: Misiona Simo)

Wales has promised to bring their A game against the Manu Samoa on Friday night. 

The visitors know the Manu Samoa is hurting after a 78-0 hammering at Eden Park last Friday night and they are expecting the home team to come out looking for blood.

Wales Captain Jamie Roberts told the Samoa Observer this Friday’s test match is going to be torrid. And from experience, he said it’s always difficult when it comes to the Manu Samoa. 

“I’ve always played in very difficult games against Samoa,” he said. 

“The World Cup in 2011 is one of the toughest games in my life and of course it was against the Manu Samoa.” 

That was in New Zealand during the Rugby World Cup.

This time the Manu will be in front of their home crowd.

“It’s a very difficult place to come and win when a team is playing at home.

“They’ll be disappointed after the weekend and what happened with the All Blacks,” he said. “There’s nothing more difficult than playing a team who just came back from a heavy defeat. 

“And they’ll be hurting for that. 

“We’re going up against a formidable opposition come Friday night and were prepared well for this week.”

Wales arrived to a friendly Samoan welcome on Sunday night. They were greeted at the airport with leis and a welcoming committee before they checked to Sheraton Samoa Aggie Grey’s where they are staying.

“It’s great to be here. It’s a place we don't tour too often but it’s good to be here.”

Away from the rugby, Roberts said they are looking to check out the island.

Some of the Wales Team who touched ground at Faleolo Sunday night.
Some of the Wales Team who touched ground at Faleolo Sunday night.
Wales Media Manager Sebastian Baritt, Former Miss Samoa Poinsettia Taefu and Wales Captain Jamie Roberts, pose for a Samoa Observer photo.
Wales Media Manager Sebastian Baritt, Former Miss Samoa Poinsettia Taefu and Wales Captain Jamie Roberts, pose for a Samoa Observer photo.
TALOFA LAVA: The Welsh team looking flash in their island shirts.
TALOFA LAVA: The Welsh team looking flash in their island shirts.

 “Some of these players, like me it’s our first time and it’s a new experience for us and we are looking forward to the beaches,” he said.  

Wales Head Coach, Robin McBryde, said playing against the Manu Samoa this weekend would be challenging and difficult. 

“It’s going to be a big game for us. It’s going to be a big test. 

“We watched a little of the game with the All Blacks last week, and they were very competitive at the first half of that game.

“They could've been in the front the first half an hour, so it’s going to be big challenge.”

Wales will have some issuesto sort out. McBryde said they have lost five of their players.

“We’re going to have to make changes. Four of our players have joined up with the British and Irish Lions squad. 

“We’ve lost one player to an injury as well. There’s going to be a few changes in the team.” 

Aside from rugby, McBryde said, they will also enjoy beautiful Samoa. 

“I know it’s a beautiful island, but we’ll try not to let the players enjoy themselves too much because we got a big game this Friday night. That’s a bit of a challenge for us.”  

They were welcomed Sunday night by employees of Samoa Tourism Authorities. Former Miss Samoa Poinsettia Taefu welcomed by team with ula’s. The Wales Rugby Union President Dennis Gethin is among the team that are staying at Sheraton Aggei Grey’s Hotel. 

Meanwhile, today the Samoa Rugby Union (S.R.U) invites all schools to a Rugby Clinic presented by the Welsh Rugby Team at Samoa College, Vaivase Tai at 9.00am. 

S.R.U calls for the public to take advantage of this great opportunity presented by Shaun Edwards and the Wales Rugby Team.

The team is also scheduled to visit the Head of State today.

© Samoa Observer 2016

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