Tuilagi scores to snap eight game losing streak for Leicester
The northern hemisphere rugby season continues over the festive period, with games either side of Christmas and New Year.
Here’s how the Samoan players got on in the last round.
English Premiership Rugby
Worcester lock Michael Fatialofa lost bragging rights with his old Hurricanes coach Chris Boyd after Boyd’s Northampton beat the Warriors 6-32. Ahsee Tuala started at fullback for the Saints, who sit midtable with 10 games played by each team.
Exeter handed Saracens their first loss of the season, winning 29-13. Former Wallabies lock Will Skelton came off the bench for Saracens.
Manu Tuilagi scored in Leicester’s 35-24 win over Harlequins. It was only the Tigers fourth win of the season, and they are currently just outside the top six and a European Champions Cup berth for next year. Former All Black Francis Saili missed out for Harlequins through injury, while Manu Samoa wing Alofa Alofa came off the bench.
Steven Luatua scored Bristol’s only try in a 27-10 loss to Sale. He started along with Manu Samoa players Chris Vui, Jack Lam and Alapati Leiua, as well as fellow former All Black John Afoa. Manu captain Vui just signed a new deal with the Bears which will keep him there until 2022.
Manu Samoa prop Logovi’i Mulipola started for Newcastle in their 17-20 loss to Gloucester. The Falcons sit bottom of the table, and are in danger of relegation to the Championship
French Top 14
Manu hookers Ole Avei and Manu Leiataua each came off the bench to score a try in the game between Racing 92 and Perpignan. Avei’s Racing won 64-28.
Former All Blacks Benson Stanley and Victor Vito both started in Pau’s match against La Rochelle. Vito’s La Rochelle triumphed 23-28, and are currently third on the Top 14 table.
Clermont and Toulouse played out a 20-20 draw in their top-of-the-table clash. Fritz Lee started for league leaders Clermont as Tim Nanai-Williams came off the bench. Jerome Kaino started opposite Lee at number eight for Toulouse, who are three competition points behind.
French Pro D2
Provence 21-16 Bayonne
Manu Samoa wing Ed Fidow missed the final game of his three-match suspension for dangerous play. His club Provence had an upset win 21-16 over second-place Bayonne, and will look to move into the top half of the table next year.
Welsh clubs Cardiff and Dragons faced off in a derby won 19-16 by Cardiff. Manu Samoa centre Rey Lee-Lo started for the Blues, as did former Junior All Black Nick Williams for his 150th appearance in the competition. Manu lock Brandon Nansen started for Dragons.
Manu Samoa back Kieron Fonotia started for Scarlets in their 19-12 loss to Ospreys.
Bundee Aki started for Connacht and drove them to a 7-19 halftime lead over powerhouse Leinster. But the reigning Pro 14 and European Champions came roaring home to win 33-29.