Paulo returns for what could be final World Cup

By Ulimasao Fata ,

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TOA SAMOA: Iosefa Paulo.

Iosefa Paulo is not taking anything for granted.

He is proud and excited to get another opportunity to play for Toa Samoa in this year’s Rugby League World Cup.

Paulo played for Toa Samoa in the 2008 Rugby League World Cup.

He then went on to represent U.S.A Tomahawks in the previous Rugby League World Cup in 2013.

But he is back and raring to go. Paulo, who hails from villages of Vaimoso and Faleapuna through his father, is excited about the chance to represent his country once more. 

He grew up in Australia and made his debut for the N.R.L. for Penrith Panthers. Then after two years there he moved to the Paramatta Eels for five years, and he is now currently playing for the Cornulla Sharks on his 3rd year now.

Paulo said their one week preparations in Samoa has been great.

“I guess it’s important to come back one more time before the World Cup to understand more of the values and culture of who we are representing,” he said.

“We are also here to witness the passion and proud Toa Samoa fans and supporters that we are representing and the nation.

training hard: Iosefa Paulo and the Toa Samoa go to work. Photo / Misiona Simo
training hard: Iosefa Paulo and the Toa Samoa go to work. Photo / Misiona Simo

“We should as players know and understand that we are representing more than a country, we are taking the whole Samoa nation with us.”

Paulo knows the draw is tough with Samoa being in the pool of death.

But he said it should be a great challenge for the Toa.

“It’s good because we want to play against the best teams,” he said.

“We just need to be in the right frame of mind and have the right preparations. I’m excited about the possibility to playing against New Zealand, Tonga and Scotland. They are all quality sides and they will not be easy.”

Paulo is looking forward to this year’s Rugby League World Cup. He also knows this will be his final World Cup. 

“I am proud to get the call back again from Matt Parish. 

“We didn’t do the job well back in 2008 and I am looking forward to getting things right.”

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