Positive thinking produces positive results.
This was the message from the Chairman of the Samoa Rugby Union and Prime Minister, Tuilaepa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi, to the Manu Samoa Sevens team yesterday.
He was addressing them during the official announcement of the team for the next leg of the H.S.B.C World Series in Las Vegas.
“I’m sure Gordon (Tietjens) has shown you the ropes of the sport,” Tuilaepa said.
“If you are able to put into action everything that you were taught then we in Samoa will be able to sing “Hallelujah” while we are rooting for you from home.”
Tuilaepa said winning and losing games comes down to an athlete’s state of mind.
“There are two regions of the brain,” he reminded, “the conscious mind and the subconscious mind.
“In every team it is so important to ensure that you’re mind doesn’t think negatively.
“If you think that you have the strength and willpower, you have the strategy to defeat the other team, your subconscious mind will coordinate your system to ensure you will have the strength you need to win.
“But if you think you will be beaten by Fiji, you will be beaten by Fiji because of how the conscious mind and system work. They coordinate the system to ensure that the system will meet the expectation to lose or your expectation to win or lose.”
Tuilaepa encouraged the team to think positive.
The team features the return of two senior players in captain Afa Aiono and Faalemiga Selesele. It also sees the inclusion of some new players, the star of the Marist Sevens from Salelologa and Sale’aula Savaii, Elisapeta Alofipo. He and Danny Kayes from Vaiala are the new names in the team.
Speaking to the Samoa Observer, coach Sir Gordon Tietjens is excited about the team.
“It’s a challenging series and I’m happy to see more experience coming into the side to assist the younger players,” he said.
“What I’m proud is that there are a number of younger players who have made this team. Joe Perez, Laaloi (Leilua) just to name a few.”
Looking ahead to Las Vegas, Tietjens said they need to play smart.
“Over the years, Samoa is really renowned for their physicality. It’s good to have younger players who are explosive and fast. We really need them. We’ve got a big team for this tournament.
“We’re playing on a smaller field in Vegas, which will require more contact. Luckily we have the younger players and physically, we’re certainly going to need them.
“I said from the very beginning it was never a quick fix but it’s about molding the team together and we’re looking to the future as well. It’s great to see the improvement from these first few tournaments.
“It’s exciting for me and it’s exciting for Samoa. I know we cant promise a victory but what I can assure you is that the way the boys have been training and the enthusiasm shown, the team will do their very best.”
Samoa is pooled with U.S.A, England and Chile for the Las Vegas leg.
Faalemiga Selesele, Afa Aiono, Lafaele Va’a, Tila Mealoi, Alex Samoa, Joe Perez, Samoa Toloa, Laaloi Leilua, Neria Foma’i, Elisapeta Alofipo, Alamanda Motuga, Danny Kayes, Lester Sefo and Savelio Ropati.