Sevens team named for Wellington

By Sina Filifilia Sevaaetasi ,

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Leading by example: Captain Tila Mealoi putting his body on the line for the tackle in Dubai.

Leading by example: Captain Tila Mealoi putting his body on the line for the tackle in Dubai. (Photo: AP)

The Samoa Rugby Union has officially announced the Manu Samoa Sevens team for the HSBC World Series in Wellington next weekend.  

The 14 man roster features an interesting mix of new players as well as familiar fixtures from the previous legs.

Tila Mealoi is still the man leading the charge flanked by fellow Apia Maroon Silao Talimao Lefono.  

Some familiar faces who will continue their journey in the blue jersey: Samoa Toloa, Siaosi Asofolau, and  Lafaele Va’a.

And new to the line-up is Manu Samoa’s Malu Falaniko, Marists’ Joe Perez, Neria Fomai, Solia Tofatu.  

Wellington will be the first official leg under the direction of Sir Gordon Tietjens which is met with great anticipation and high expectations.  

Head Coach told the New Zealand Herald, “With Wellington, it’s a really tough pool.  We’re fourth seeds, and it would exceed expectations to make the cup quarters.” 

Samoa is pooled with New Zealand (local time: 2:41PM), France (5.42PM) , and the United States (9.36PM).

As fate would have it, Samoa will kick off their campaign in Wellington against Tietjen’s former side of 22 years, New Zealand.  

 “I suppose 22 years of expectations been lifted off my shoulders.  I am looking to move Samoa up the ladder and get them to be a real force back in sevens rugby,” Tietjens told the Bay of Plenty Times.

Tietjens has wasted no time to whipping the men in blue in shape.  

Beginning with over 18 players, the team travelled to New Zealand early in January to undergo extreme intensive training all culminating to this final moment.

Samoa participated in the Bay of Plenty Provincial Sevens tournament where they fared extremely well but that was just the warm-up.  The team then convened  at Mt. Maunganui where they underwent intense training centered around working on fitness and nutrition.  

Finally, Samoa played a strong Japanese side at Mt. Manuganui Thursday acting as dress rehearsal for both teams before naming the final 14 man roster. 

 

Manu Samoa Sevens Team for Wellington Sevens

GIVEN NAME

FAMILY NAME

VILLAGE(S)

CLUB/ PROVINCE

1

SILAO

TALIMAO LEFONO

LANO / LALOMALAVA

APIA MAROONS/APIA

2

ALAMANDA

MOTUGA

SAANAPU / SATAOA

 MANUREWA/COUNTIES MANUKAU

3

FRANCIS    

IEREMIA

MOATAA/TUANAI/FALEU MANONO TAI

MOATAA/APIA

4

LAFAELE

VA'A

VAILELE/SATAOA

VAILELE/APIA

5

TOMASI 

ALOSIO 

LEVI, SALEIMOA / FALEFA

HOBM, WELLINGTON

6

NERIA

FOMAI

MAGIAGI/LEPUIAI MANONO TAI

HRS, HAWKES BAY

7

TOFATU

SOLIA

MALAEMALU, TAFATAFA,SATALO FALEALILI

LAULII/APIA

8

LAALOI

LEILUA

LAULII / MALAELA/LOTOPUE MUTIATELE

LAULII/APIA

9

TILA          

MEALOI  (CAPT)

LALOMANU

APIA MAROONS/APIA

10

SAMOA

TOLOA

LALOVI MULIFANUA/SASAAI/SATOLEPAI

SASAAI

11

JOE

PEREZ

VAIGAGA/SALEAULA

MARIST/VAIGAGA 

12

SIAOSI

ASOFOLAU

MANINOA, SIUMU, SATALO FALEALILI

VAIALA/APIA

13

MALU

FALANIKO

LANO/SASAAI/FASITOO TAI

VAIALA/AANA

14

ALEFOSIO 

TAPILI

LEULUMOEGA/FALEFA

MARIST/APIA WEST

MANAGEMENT:

Manager: Ramsey Tomokino - Saina

Coach: Gordon Tietjens

Assistant Coach: Stephen Betham - Vaiala / Ululoloa

Physio: Kendall Elliot or Akbar Bhamji

Video Analyst: Ryan Piper

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