Leilua heads home, Fanuasa and Masoe called

Manu Samoa Sevens player, Laaloi Leilua, has had to leave Dubai, where the team are preparing for the HSBC Sevens Series for personal reasons.

He is being replaced by Paulo Fanuasa and Pacific Games Gold Medalist Kelvin Masoe, who have left Samoa to make the trip to Dubai.

Leilua’s departure takes away from the team’s already depleted playmaker stocks with Melani Matavao and Uaina Sione out injured.

“We’ve had a little hiccup on tour with Laaloi having to go back to deal with some urgent matters back in Samoa,” coach Sir Gordon Tietjens said on Facebook.

“We wish him and his family very, very well.

Tietjens said the team has faced a “couple of disruptions” so far in Dubai but are looking to start well against Canada on Thursday (Friday 3:06am local time).

“The team are feeling for Laaloi at the moment," he said. 

“We are in good shape at the moment. We have settled in in Dubai and are looking to go to our first training today.”

The team are also scheduled to play Wales (9:14pm local time) and New Zealand (3:28am local time) on Friday.

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